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Countries struggle with education access

Kalesi Mele
Friday, October 13, 2017

SOME countries in the Pacific are still struggling to achieve universal access to primary education for all their students.

Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat director of programs and initiatives Shiu Raj made the comment at the 22nd consultation meeting of the Pacific Heads of Education Systems at Tanoa International Hotel in Nadi on Wednesday.

Mr Raj said there needed to be a more concerted effort from regional leaders in terms of investing in education.

"Investment in the education sector directly contributes to other development goals, such as addressing poverty reduction inequalities, health and nutrition, economic growth and labour market opportunities," he said.

"The education sector itself is a significant business opportunity th­at we all need to be alert about. Our community and religious groups ha­ve a very important role in providing education facilities. We need to invest in new technologies and methods of teaching, including upskilling our teachers."

He said it was important for governments to create a conducive environment for such engagements to happen. Mr Raj said other than dealing with Sustainable Development Goals at ministerial levels, it would be more effective to include information about SDGs into school curricula.

"We need to invest in our young people on regionalism priorities and knowledge about SDGs."

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