Prime Minister James Marape says Flexible Open Distance Education (FODE) offers a second chance in life for thousands of school leavers throughout Papua New Guinea and is a major achievement of his Government.
He said this today (October 17, 2022) when commending FODE Grade 8, 10 and 12 students who are sitting for their final examinations this week and next week.
The grades 8 and 10 sit for their final exams this week while the 12s do theirs next week.
PM Marape said the students had role models in Education Minister Hon. Jimmy Uguro, Community Development Minister Hon. Jason Peter, Defence Secretary John Akipe – all school leavers – who were offered a second chance in life through FODE.
He cited the success story of Hope Institute in his Tari-Pori District where many school leavers who completed Grade 12 last year were now in universities and tertiary institutions around the country.
“I wish all the grades 8, 10 and 12 students – many of them adults catching up on what they missed out on earlier in life – all the best as they sit for their exams,” PM Marape said.
“One of the biggest achievements of our Government since we took office in 2019 was putting back more than 50,000 students into classrooms to have a second chance to complete their grades 8, 10 and 12.
“It is now compulsory for all students to at least have a Grade 12 certificate for personal identification, link to SME programmes and labour mobility in Australia, National Volunteer Service, and various other programmes of Government .
“We want all our young people, who are out in society doing nothing, to make use of FODE to at least have a Grade 12 education so that they can move on in life.
“This is also a direct intervention by our Government to address the law-and-order problem over the long term.”
PM Marape said the Government was now moving to make grades 8 and 10 certificates redundant with only Grade 12 to be recognised.
“It is heartwarming to see school leavers returning to classes to complete their grades 8, 10 and 12, including adults who have been out of the education system for many years,” he said.
“This shows the determination and fighting spirit within them to achieve what they missed out on earlier in life.”