Editorial comment – It’s back to school

The new school term officially begins next Monday, January 13. Picture: FILE

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

For some though, school starts tomorrow.

As we send our children off to school today, let’s reflect on the year that was, and look forward with optimism this year.

Let’s make it a positive term one for our children.

Understandably there would have been many last-minute issues to attend to at the weekend.

Let’s face it though, this first term should be about ensuring our children are prepared for classes and another journey of discovery in 2020.

The State has been focusing on education over recent years.

When we consider the attention on education, there will be a tendency to go 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 $101.54 million from 2013.

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

As 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.”

All Fijians, he said, “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 important for the development of any nation.

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

So let’s instil in our children a desire to learn.

The base is set at home.

Our children need support systems.

They need encouragement, and they need guidance and motivation to do well at school.

Let’s lap up the State’s initiative and embrace the opportunity to be educated.

Let’s set the platform for our children to be motivated to do well this year.

Thousands of students would have embraced the opportunity to be back in class.

Some first-timers would have had separation issues, placing pressure on their parents and guardians this morning.

There would have been uncertainty and anxiety.

As reports today suggest, not all was rosy for every student leading up to today.

There were obstacles some faced that would have stressed the average child. In the face of all the issues that did pop up for some of them, the overriding need for education empowered them to push on.

They overcame their demons to eventually make it to school today.

It’s all part of a new school year.

We wish every student heading to school this morning, and parents and guardians, all the best in 2020.

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