Australian High Commission
Papua New Guinea

Partnerships for Improving Education program launched

On 6 February 2023, the Minister for Education Hon. Jimmy Uguro MP and the Secretary of the National Department of Education Dr. Uke Kombra, launched the PNG-Australia Partnerships for Improving Education (PIE) program. The launch coincided with the official opening of the 2023 academic year at Dapu Primary School in Vanimo and in West Sepik.

PIE is an eight-year Australian funded investment designed to improve access, equity, and student learning outcomes in the early grades. The program operates at the national and subnational level in four target locations Enga, Central, West Sepik and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.

Education Minister Jimmy Uguro centre flanked (left) by Education Secretary Dr Uke Kombra, Teaching Service Commission Chairperson Samson Wangihomie, Education Secretary Executive Officer Nigel John, and right Sandaun Governor Tony Wouwou, Sandaun Provincial Education Council Chairperson Elisa Wate, Australian High Commission First Secretary Marlon Butler, and Provincial Administrator Conrad Tilau with delegates from National Department of Education, AHC and Bilum Books.

The new program, designed in close consultation with the National Department of Education (NDoE) and key education stakeholders, aims to address limitations and challenges faced in early grade education and ensure more children attend school, including girls and children with disabilities. This will be done through upskilling of elementary teachers with dedicated in-service training, providing curriculum materials, books and supporting School Boards of Management develop school learning improvement plans and supporting NDoE to improve data management to inform policy and planning.

The Director for Education in West Sepik, Mr. Hillary Suamba, on behalf of the West Sepik provincial department of education thanked the Australian Government for its ongoing support through the PNG-Australia Partnership.

He added that the province and education division was committed to partnering with the program as it aims to support quality education for all children, upgrade teachers’ teaching skills and improve student enrolment and retention.

Australian High Commission representative, First Secretary, Marlon Butler said this investment by the Australian Government will support the PNG Government’s vision to provide quality education for early grade children.

Sandaun Governor Tony Wouwou shaking hands with Australian High Commission First Secretary Marlon Butler to signify the launch of the Partnerships for Improving Education program in Sandaun Province.

 He added that an educated population will enable a literate, healthy and inclusive workforce that will contribute to the economic and social development of the country.

Partnerships for Improving Education is implemented in partnership with National Department of Education through the PNGAusPartnership.

For further information, including access to related materials, please contact the Australian High Commission media team: +675 7090 0100