Back to school

IT is back to school today for thousands of students around the country.

It’s the start of another new term. As we send them off this morning, perhaps we should reflect on the year that was and work towards making this new term a positive one.

There may have been some last-minute issues to attend to at the weekend, stationery to sort out, books to get covered, uniforms and shoes to buy perhaps.

Today is about ensuring our children are prepared for classes and another journey of discovery in 2018.

It is not difficult to note that the State has placed a heavy focus on education over recent years.

We keep going back to 2014 to get a bearing on the State’s focus on education.

That was when $370 million was set aside for the Education Ministry, an increase of $101.54m from 2013.

There was a concerted effort to expand into new policy initiatives.

As the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama pointed out when he announced the 2014 budget in November, 2013, “2014 will go down as the year we embarked on an education revolution to better equip all our young people for their future and build a Fiji that is not just smarter, but which provides every young person with increased opportunities.

“It will be a nation in which no young person seeking knowledge, skills and training is left behind because of economic disadvantage, a nation in which poverty is no barrier to learning.”

He said all Fijians “will be encouraged and provided the incentive to embrace learning as a means to improve their own lives and the wellbeing of the nation.

“Every Fijian will be given the opportunity to pursue excellence, to reach for the stars.”

Education is critical for the development of any nation.

It makes sense then that special attention is placed on it.

Let us work towards instilling in our children a desire to learn.

We should strive to inculcate in them the need to place great value on education.

We should be lapping up the State’s initiative and embracing the opportunity to be educated.

There is much attention focused on education, and that is important.

We should make things happen for our children. We should embrace the need to learn and be educated.

That is why today is quite important. It is part of the base to launch this appreciation of education.

We need to set the platform for our children to be motivated to do well this year.

We wish every student heading to school this morning, and parents and guardians, all the best in 2018.

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