Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development (MEHRD) Dr Franco Rodie is confident the Education Act 2023 will improve access to quality of education and have a significant impact on learners in the country.
He highlighted this during an official celebration to mark the passing of the Education Bill 2023 on Wednesday 25th, October at the Pacific Crown Hotel.
The Education Bill 2023 was passed by Parliament without amendments on October 12th, 2023.
The Bill passed becomes an Act after the Governor General assents it. The Act will cater for the administration and regulation of Early Childhood, Primary, and Secondary Education, including registration of teachers, education providers, schools, and early childhood education centres. The Act also provides provisions to repeal the Education Act 1978 (Cap. 69) and for related purposes.
Dr Rodie, in his closing remarks of the celebration, said the country is at a real crossroads, at a decisive moment in the history of education and we cannot squander by going back to the old education system.
“With our new Education Act and the subordinate documents such as the Education Funding Code, Administrative Instructions, and Learning Framework, I am confident that we will improve the quality of education in our country and have a significant impact on our learners,” he said.
Dr Rodie said the commencement date of the Education Act is yet to be decided and the work is far from over.
But with what has been accomplished, it has made a difference to the key education stakeholders and beneficiaries of our education system and our children.
He said one of the biggest takeaways from this achievement is the importance of intentional collaboration at all levels of the education system, other key education stakeholders or agencies that support students, families and teachers and their wellbeing.
He said the new Education Act has shifted our ambitions for the next 10 years-from not only emphasizing education for all but learning for all.
He said what we should be saying today is that with the guidance of the Education Act and new strategies to improve teaching and learning, our children, school-aged boys and girls in every corner of our country, must be able to go to schools and reap the benefits of life-long learning.
“We have the courage to say, we can and must, do better this time around,” PS Dr Rodie said.
He further adds that the Education Act and subordinate documents and other documents that his Ministry has developed with support from development partners emphasise the importance of a child’s education and our aspirations to do things differently and still achieve the desired educational outcomes.
While there is progress being made, Dr Rodie said more effort is needed to translate the slogan of leaving no one behind into reality.
Meanwhile, he acknowledges the governments of Australia and New Zealand for the continuous financial support towards the education reform program of his ministry.
One of the key reforms undertaken by MEHRD is developing the new Education Act 2023.