DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
The Department of Education leads the delivery of education services to children, young people and adults both:
We implement the PNG Government policy on early childhood, general school education and vocational training. Its core functions are:
The Department of Education is the executive and inspectorial branch of the National Education System. It derives its powers from the Education Act 1983 (amended 1995) and any other law relating to education matters. DoE is also subjected to Section 42 of the Organic Law on Provincial Governments and Local level Governments.
Minister for Education
The Minister is the political head responsible for the overall management of education through the Ministry of Education, which comprises the National Department of Education (NDoE), the Office of Libraries and Archives (OLA) and the Teaching Service Commission (TSC). The Minister for Education has responsibility for control of the curriculum, which includes curriculum content, standards and examinations, minimum entry age, the number of teaching days each year, the number of years of instruction, the maximum pupil-teacher ratios and the language of instruction.
National Department of Education
Under the Organic Law on Provincial Governments and Local-Level Governments, the NDoE determines national policies and standards and supports their implementation by the provinces with services such as planning, research, training and staff development.
The NDoE is responsible for: teacher in-service, inspection and registration; the national curriculum; curriculum materials; and examinations. It is also responsible for national institutions, namely national high schools, special education resource centers, flexible, open and distance education (FODE) centres and schools in the National Capital District. DoE is also responsible for the disbursement and the supervision of the expenditure of money lawfully available for schools.
Office of Libraries and Archives
The Office of Libraries and Archives (OLA) comprise three divisions: the National Library Service of Papua New Guinea; the National Archives; and Corporate Services. Its major role is to co-ordinate the planning and development of libraries and archives throughout the country. The National Library Service’s primary objective is to preserve all documents on Papua New Guinea life and society in the national collection for all Papua New Guineans to enjoy and learn from.
Teaching Service Commission
The Teaching Service Commission (TSC), established by an Act of Parliament, acts as the agent of the state for the employment of teachers. It oversees teachers’ terms and conditions of service, salaries and welfare. It supports rights of teachers.
National Education Board
The NEB is the highest education decision-making body in Papua New Guinea, overseeing the development and functioning of the education system and the implementation of the NEP. It advises the minister, in consultation with provincial governments, the TSC and education boards and agencies.
The Secretary for Education, as head of the education department, is the statutory chairman of the NEB.
The head of the Department of Education is the Secretary for Education. The Secretary also chairs the National Education Board.
The Secretary is the chief executive of the National Education System and is responsible under the Minister for the provision of administrative services to the National Education Board and is responsible for determining the qualifications and standards required for registration or provisional registration of teachers, for the inspection of all schools, and for the certification and assessment of teachers.
Provincial Governments through the provincial and district administrations and provincial education boards, have the responsibility for establishing, building and maintaining schools. The provinces deploy teachers and employ provincial and district education officers. A provincial education subsidy in the form of Education Function Grants must be spent on operating costs and maintenance, and at least half must be spent on the districts’ minimum priority activities.
The Provincial Education Board (PEB) is the highest education decision-making body in a province. Most provincial boards are headed by a chairman, who is the Provincial Education Adviser. Powers and functions of the PEBs vary from province to province depending on the powers devolved to them through their provincial laws and subject to the capacity of the province.
District Education Boards are an integral part of the administration of education in the districts. Members are stakeholders within the districts. The powers and functions of the district boards vary from province to province depending on the powers devolved to them. The National Education Board can veto board decisions.
Local-Level Government is the third level of government. It plays a minimal role in education but its responsibilities include the funding and maintenance of elementary and primary schools and helping districts to develop district education plans consistent with provincial education plans.
Education agencies are key partners that establish, maintain and conduct member schools within the National Education System. They include faith based and private agencies with well-established networks of schools in all education sectors. The agencies have varied student entry criteria and teacher terms and conditions.
They are also required to impose a common fee on the parents or guardians of students attending its schools to cover the responsibilities of the agency in respect of the operation of the schools including the payment of teachers and ancillary staff, learning materials, general maintenance of buildings and facilities, equipment and aids.
Each education agencies have an education secretary that acts as the channel of communication between the education agency and other education authorities.
Governing boards are Boards of Management (BOMs) in elementary and primary schools and Boards of Governors (BOGs) in secondary and other post-primary schools. They are the schools’ highest decision-making bodies and have financial and management powers. They also have disciplinary powers but their decisions can be rejected by the Provincial or National Education Board.
Communities, through schools’ governing bodies, share responsibility for infrastructure, including school buildings, teachers’ houses and ancillary facilities and the overall up keeping of the school.