3 school terms is enough to cater for students and teachers

Minister for Education, Aseri Radrodro says three school terms is enough to cater for students and teachers as has always been and if Opposition MP and former Education Minister Premila Kumar says consultations were held, then the Ministry is saying not enough was done.

He has made these comments after Kumar claimed that the change from four school term structure to three school terms made by Radrodro is regressive.

While responding to questions sent by fijivillage News, Radrodro says 4 terms were done to cater for the Covid situation but we have managed that scenario and we must now retain the school term that has worked well with teachers, students and parents.

He says the rationale suggested by the former Minister is noted, however the coalition government feels that not enough consultations were done and no matter how logical a rationale provided is, unless the people affected by policy decisions accept and feel a part of the process of consultations. , they will not take kindly to change.

Radrodro further says Fiji has always had 3 school terms and any subsequent change will require more robust discussions including parents and guardians as well as with students themselves.

The Minister says all stakeholders need to be engaged to discuss such a major policy direction and any consultation for major policy changes need all stakeholders.

He says the coalition government believes in proper and engaging consultation and until then, the three school terms for the calender year shall be retained.

Radrodro adds they do not fix something that is not broken.

While speaking at a press conference at the FijiFirst Headquarters, Kumar says unfortunately, the Minister has failed to understand the rationale behind this change and the benefit this brings to the education and other sectors.

Kumar says the rationale to introduce four school terms was to bring about overall efficiency in the education system by aligning this with international best practice.

The MP says the proposal was well received by the stakeholders such as the Fiji Head Teachers Association, the Fiji Principals Association, Parents Teachers Association, Fiji Retailers Association, parents, teachers, heads of school, faith based organization and Fijian Teachers Association.

She says the Fiji Teachers Union did not give their views.

Kumar adds consultations were held by the divisional and district education officers around the country and written views were also sought from stakeholders through social media platforms who could not attend in person consultation.

She says they also used the teachers talanoa platform on the Ministry’s website where people could give their views.


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