Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi believes a ‘business as usual’ attitude towards education will not cut it for teachers in Samoa.
“How can we do business as usual when the world is facing a learning crisis?” Tuilaepa said.
“Over 250 million children worldwide do not know their places in reading and mathematics,” he said. “Some 781 million adults are unable to read and write and 200 million young people leave schools without the skills they need to thrive.”
Tuilaepa was speaking to open the annual two-day Ministry of Education Teachers conference under the theme “If not now ...when?”
“Education is the key to sustainable development and as such the government is committed fully to ensuring that Samoa will achieve the United Nation Education Development Goal through the strategies applied in the UNESCO’s framework for National Education 2030.”
The meeting is open to all stakeholders of education, including teachers, parents and students.
Key topics being covered by the presentations at the Conference include “Effective Leadership Strategies and Observed Practices”, “Best Literacy Practices” and other crucial areas related to this year’s theme.
Fred Brooker, an Education Specialist from Australia with extensive international and regional experience in education, addressed the meeting yesterday.
Another special presentation will be by Adonica Ihilani Kauwe Limon, a Health Research Specialist from Utah University, U.S.A.
The participants will hear of the findings from a research she conducted in Samoa on hygiene and sanitation in schools and the impact on student learning.
The study will reinforce the need for schools to achieve the minimum service standards that are in place to improve the quality of learning environments for children. Other presenters include school principals, school committees and village pastors, with representatives of mission and private schools, private organisations, government ministries, and the media.