THROUGH direction provided by the People's Charter, the Education Ministry has succeeded in bringing 72 educational reforms over the past five years.
Speaking at a workshop for managers and heads of Sangam schools in Nadi yesterday, education permanent secretary Dr Brij Lal said the reforms were extremely beneficial to the young people of Fiji.
He said one of the major reforms was the construction of six infant schools in rural areas to discourage children from Year One to Three from boarding.
"The Prime Minister saw this when he was in Bua and suggested building infant schools," he said.
One school each has been completed in Yasawa and Bua and the rest are still under construction.
"The provision for per capita grants for hostel students will continue and we will work on strengthening preschools. Some schools have missed out on per capita grants and we are working on this, hoping that it will come into phase next year."
The free education scheme for primary and secondary school students is another reform of the ministry.
"I must thank the Then India Sanmarga Ikya Sangam schools as we have had no issues with them for the education scheme.
"Many schools have been overcharging students and adding additional levies and we would like to thank the Sangam schools for being co-operative."
He said giving free textbooks to students in primary and high schools, even for vocational students, had been a worthy investment as well.
"The removal of the Fiji Intermediate Examination, Fiji Eighth Year Examination and the Fiji Junior Certificate Examination has allowed students to get 12 years of basic education and at the same time, we have introduced class-based assessments."