Ministry confronts issues, challenges

Educationists in Samoa are gearing up for the new academic year.

As part of their preparations, they gathered at the Pesega Hall for a three-day Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture (M.E.S.C.) annual conference, starting yesterday.

The conference followed a prayer service on Sunday evening during which the Ministry committed its work to God in prayer.

Yesterday, Minister of Education, Sports and Culture, Loau Keneti Sio, told the conference participants – which included teachers and school principals – that they have a critical role to play in shaping Samoa’s  future.

“This conference is an opportunity for all these stakeholders to commemorate, share and prepare for another year of teaching and learning,” he said. 

“The theme of the conference is ‘measure what you value and value what you measure’.

“The theme strongly promotes the need to measure important educational indicators – to guide the way forward for achievement of quality education for the young people of Samoa. 

He added: We should ask ourselves, are we valuing what we are doing? 

The theme for the 2019 conference, he said, promotes the importance of educational indicators. 

While there were challenges within the sector that affected the Ministry, he said he is hopeful the conference will mark the start of a new journey.

“The ministries were asked to implement trainings at all levels, and introduce the way of teaching methods and practice to improve education. 

I have been a Minister for the Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture, I have received and continued to receive complaints about various issues, from students’ performance, teacher shortage, teacher quality, insufficient resources and so forth. 

“However it is my hope that today’s preparation and sharing will provide you new ideas and grabs the better way of measuring what we value and value what we measure. Because we are all hungry for positive results we all want to see transformation in our schools not in the next 10 years but very soon.”

Minister Loau also encouraged everyone to play their part to further improvement on education for everyone.

“Challenges will always be there, but it is how we address them that will make a difference. 

“That is my view and encouragement to you all. Whether you are a village chief, business manager, school principal, school inspector or even care taker. We all need to play a part for improving education for the future of this country.”

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