NEARLY HALF OF THE SCHOOLS IN GOILALA CLOSED


Goilala District in Papua New Guinea’s Central Province has 38 Community and Primary Schools. Out of these 38 Schools, 11 are Primary Schools while 27 are Community Schools.
Schools in Goilala
15 schools out of these 38 schools are closed.
The reasons for these schools been closed range from no teachers, to no classrooms to no Teachers houses. Even some  schools are closed because of security reasons.

Out of these 15 schools, 3 are Primary schools while the rest are Community Schools.

Omu Primary School [Guari LLG], Tavuniav Primary School[Tapini LLG], Garime Primary School and Garime Primary Schools [Woitape LLG] are closed. While Rupila, Koega, Kamulai, Givena, Kileipi, Iruavai, Minalu, Koruavu, Erume, Belavista and Poromania Community Schools are all closed.

CLOSED-OPEN
It must be noted here that most of the schools in Goilala are managed by Catholic Church Agency  – Bereina Dioceses.  The only schools thats governed outside of this arrangement is Tolokuma Primary Schools which is directly managed by Tolokuma Gold Mine.

It is unclear who is supposed to help re-open closed schools and also it is unclear who is supposed to be ensuring the concerns and various Administration issues raised and faced by respective schools in Goilala is addressed.

The Catholic Church Agency thinks its the fault of the Provincial Education Board. The Provincial Education Board reckons its the District Administration Education sector and the District Education sector assumes its the responsibility of the Teaching Services Commission.

The Teching Services Commission obviously has the whole Country’s Education agenda to be concern about so at the end of the day, who is GOILALA?

This mystery keeps victimizing the poor helpless school ages children in Goilala year in, year out.

TOLUKUMA GOLD MINES EVICTED DUE TO NON PAYMENT OF RENTALS – PETROMIN HOUSE


Asidokona owned and operated Tolokuma Gold Mines Limited has once again hit the spot light.

This time, TGM has been evicted out of Petromin House at Murray Barrack, Port Moresby for non payment of rental going back a month or more.

Reliable source from within Tolokuma Gold mines confirmed the eviction rumor is real.

Sources from Tolokuma Gold mine site also confirmed employees have not been paid for over 6 fornights.

Most of the hired employees have left and the local employees are not sure what really is going on with this mine.

The Mine now has a handful of senior management staff who are over seeing the already malfunctioning mine operations.

The mine is actually not runing to its full capacity at all.

It was confirmed this morning Chopper company providing air transport service to the mine’s operations has also pulled back due to non payment of dues.

This ineffective, substandard management of TGM by Asidokona Minning Company has also affected Tolokuma Primary schools operations. Head Teacher of TGM Primary confirmed they have sent students home due to shortage of stationary and support from TGM to their general running of the school.

TGM Clinic has also scaled down on its operations due to shortage of drugs in their storeroom.

Prices of basic food stuff at the mine site has double if not trippled in the last few weeks.

Asidokona is truly a mystery mining company that seem to have no idea whatsoever in running this mine. There is no professionalism in its structure and its planning and its execution of its plans and goals.

Its a pity the PNG Government seem to turn a blind eye on TGM and its hardship.

5-YEAR DISTRICT DEVELOPMENT PLAN – WHO SHOULD BE RESPONSIBLE FOR CRAFTING AND WRITING THAT?


China-5-Year-Plan
Time and again, we have had politicians design, plan and write up 5YDP for our District.
Half the time most of these 5YDPs are Copy Paste documents from past politicians or from some other District’s 5YDP from other Members of Parliament from another District.
Politicians are seasonal individuals.They come and go after every 5 years.
So why would we put the planning and designing and writing of our District’s 5 Year District Development Plan in their hands and expect them to do a better job?
Most of the time all they will be worried about is how to repay their mates, campaign sponsors, and political affiliates and associates during the course of their term in Office. Hence the 5YDP that they come up with will not be very reflective of what Goilala needs.They will even be funding projects with the mindset of having enough money pooled together for their up and coming campaign.
So in my humble view, all 5DYPs must and should be thoroughly planned, designed and written by the District Administration Team – headed by the District Administrator aka CEO.
The CEO with the help of the District Planner and the District Treasurer work with the different sector coordinators with assistance from LLG Managers from the 3 LLGs.
These people should be the brains behind the 5YDP of our District.
When a politician gets elected, he/she should be handed the already prepared and finalized 5YDP to implement.
POLITICIANS MUST NEVER BE RESPONSIBLE FOR DEVELOPING ANY 5YDP.

OPERATIONAL | NON OPERATIONAL | CLOSED SCHOOLS in GOILALA


In Goilala District, primary schools can be categorised into three different groups. These groups are:

1. Operational Schools
2. Non-Operational Schools
3. Closed Schools.

The 4th group is “Ghost schools” or Paper Schools”. But this 4th group isn’t the crux of this article. We will revisit that in a later date.

1. OPERATIONAL SCHOOLS.
Operational Schools are schools that have teachers posted to every year and have students attending school in a academic calender year.

Operational schools are planned for by the GoPNG throught its National Department of Education [NDoE] in their budgetary allocations via its Provincial Government’s education divisions.

These means that whatever funding/subsidies that gets allocated to these schools are expected to find its way to these schools to be utilised for its accademic year administration and management of the school. There is nothing wrong with such a school.

2. NON OPERATIONAL SCHOOLS.
The problem props up when a school is a Non Operational.
Non Operational schools are schools that are closed from Goilala people’s point of view – on the ground. But from the Provincial and National Department of Education point of view, these schools are open or Operating schools.

Just as a “Operational School” budget allocations are done for these schools and pushed down the channel.

When these fund/subsidies reach Central Provincial Education division, it is unknown if these funds are still pushed further down to the District’s Education Division or not – Knowing that these schools are no longer operating. No Teacher on site. No students attending school.

But if these funds does get to the District’s Educational Division, then where does there funds go to from there? Because obviously, the schools these subsidies/funds are allocated to is “CLOSED”.

3.CLOSED SCHOOLS.
Closed schools are schools which were once open. But are no longer open these days. The problem with these schools is, who is responsible to have them re-opened? How do we have these closed schools re-opened? What is the correct process and procedure to follow to have such closed schools re-opened?

There is also another problem that rises out of these closed schools. To the people of Goilala, a schools is CLOSED. Because they live in close proximity to the school grounds. But to the Provincial Education Authority, these schools are OPEN hence when Teacher postings are done at the start of a school year, some teachers are posted to these “CLOSED SCHOOLS”.

This action literally means, a Teacher is registered as a employee of Education Department, and gets paid every fortnight for doing NOTHING.

CONCLUSION
Funding allocated for all schools from National Education Department when approved and paid out, is there a monitoring process in place to ensure these allocated funds reach the schools?

For Non-Operational Schools, what happpens to their funding? Does the NDoE recoups the money and re-allocate to other schools?

For the Closed schools, who makes the recommendation for a closed school to be re-open? Is it the People? Or is it the District’s education division? Or the agnecy incharge of education in Goilala?

How about the Open Member? Does the MP for Goilala have any say in there as well?

When a school re-opens, does it automatically gets its funding allocated? Or are there criteria and procedures/conditions that a recently re-opened schools has to meet before funding is allocated?
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The 3 categories identified here are just a generalised groupings. There are ghost schools in existence as well.

Is there someone giving a yearly status update on our Goilala District schools which forms the basis of budget allocations year in, year out?
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NOTE:
What’s posted here is my layman, noneducationalist view point. Am no teacher, nor am I an employee of the Education system of PNG at any level.
I stand ready to be corrected. I also stand ready to be criticized.
Either way, this is my opinion. What is yours?

THIS ARRANGEMENT IS BETWEEN MONIAVE AND AUSTRALIAN PARRISH PRIEST AT TAPINI – Fr BRIAN EXPLAINS.


Brian Cahill Replies to this article…

 Anthony, I have been following your post on this topic, and I am not quite sure where you are coming from and of what you appear to be accusing me of doing that lacks transparency and fairness.

With regards to sending students down to Australia from Sacred Heart High School. This is an arrangement established by Monivae College with the Catholic Parish of Tapini through its Parish Priest (who happens to be an Australian MSC) in favour of students in the Tapini area attending Sacred Heart High School. It is funded by Monivae College (which is an MSC owned school in Australia) and the Catholic Church at Tapini.

This is not an arrangement between Monivae and Sacred Heart High School. And it is not in any way funded by Sacred Heart High School.

Therefore how the Catholic Church at Tapini chooses to support particular students in this regard, or provide any form of support for particular students attending Sacred Heart High School, or other institutions for that matter through sponsorship is not the business of others. It is a private matter to do with a particular student, the student’s parents and the parish with its benefactors.

To draw a parallel, the same can be said for Kanosia students attending Sacred Heart whose fees are paid for by the Doa Rubber Plantation. Is that being unfair to other students attending Sacred Heart who are not from Kanosia, whose fees are not being paid for by the Doa Rubber Plantation?

The arrangement in place between Monivae College and the Catholic Church at Tapini for sending students down to Australia is very much dependent on me, and contingent on me. Monivae is reliant on my good judgment in selecting students for this scholarship. In doing so, I consult with others on the ground at Tapini, such as the HT of the High School. There is criterion followed for the selection of students that takes into consideration their suitability and well-being. In this, I am accountable to parents, the MSC, the Diocese and to Monivae College.

Most importantly I take on a duty of care and responsibility for the welfare for these students from my parish sent to Australia in ensuring that they are well prepared beforehand, that they have adequate and proper support structures in place while they are in Australia, and that they have support for re-entry when they return. This is not a simple job. Surely this is the main complaint coming from Central students being sent to Malaysia by the Governor.

Fr Brian Cahill msc PP

Catholic Church

Tapini High School, Goilala Central Province, Papua New Guinea

​MONIVAE COLLEGE STUDENT EXCHANGE PROGRAM WITH TAPINI SHHS – QUESTION WITHOUT NOTICE.



Can someone in the Known – most preferably BOG Chairman and School Administration – or anyone that has the inside information advice on how MONIAVE COLLEGE student exchange program works?
I have seen photos of students from Tapini Sacred Heart High School posted on Facebook esp, been schooled in Moniave College, Australia.
I have been wondering how students exchange happens? How are students chosen to go down south on this exchange program?

Is it merit based? Is it religion based? Is it locality based? Does the college choose who is chosen? Does Tapini SHHS choose who is selected under this arrangement?

Please help me get some facts out for the wider Goilala and the interested public.

Note: A reply to this has been done by Fr Brian Cahill. And it will be posted as a Comment.

FIRST LANDING AT SOPU AIRSTRIP AFTER 30 YEARS – RURAL AIRSTRIP AGENCY.


First Landing at Sopu After 30 years

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The people of Sopu in the Goilala district of central province are celebrating the re-opening of their airstrip after 30 years of isolation.

Last Wednesday, Aug 2, Fixed-Wing Chief Pilot of SIL Aviation, Jonathan Aederwitz, landed a small Cesna much to the jubilation and excitement of the local community who had gathered to watch the event.

The Sopu airstrip is 6,000 feet above sea level in the Owen Stanley Mountain range. It is 535 meters (1,750 ft) long and has an average slope of 11%.

It has not seen an aeroplane land in thirty years as it has been closed.
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In mid 2016, the local Goilala MP Hon William Samb and his government partnered with the Rural Airstrip Agency to re-open several airstrips in his electorate. This included Ononge, Woitape, Yongai, Fane, Guari and Sopu.

Work on Sopu started in February this year. An initial drone survey was done on the day that the two men crew moved in. Work included cutting of the elephant grass, digging of drains, smoothing out undulating surfaces and widening the airstrip by cutting into the slope. A windsock pole and cone markers were also installed.

The community was very involved in the project, providing constant support to the crew.

Mr Aederwitz was estactic to be part of the occasion.

“On Wednesday I had the privilege of making the first landing to re-open Sopu airstrip in Central Province, Papua New Guinea. Sopu serves the Tauade language group and has been closed for 30 years. This past year, the Rural Airstrip Authority of PNG has been working with the local community to fix up the airstrip so that it could be opened again.
Sopu is 6,000 feet above sea level in the Owen Stanley Mountain range. As you look down the runway it looks like a ski jump because it starts down at 16% slope and “levels off” to about 1% slope at the bottom.” He said.
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RAA CEO John Bromley commended the RAA team and the Sopu community on the successful completion of work to re-open the airstrip and the test landing. He also thanked SIL for its contribution.

Mr Bromley said the involvement of the local MP William Samb has meant that more communities in Goilala are enjoying the services of a maintained airstrip again.

Rural airstrips are a significant transport linkage for rural communities and island communities in PNG. There are around 650 rural airstrips in PNG, according to PNG Airstrip Guide 2013. However ninety (90) percent of these airstrips are currently closed and others that are open are maintained by agencies such as RAA and private operators and the missions and the churches.
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While the responsibility of rural airstrips lies with the Provincial Government, DDAs, LLGs and respected Open members, only few Provinces have taken up initiative to maintain the airstrips. It is an important challenge for RAA to maintain and increase dialogue with all these levels of Government to financially support the implementation of the airstrip maintenance or restoration programs in their Province, District or Electorate.

RAA’s work to restore these closed airstrips, significantly improves the standard of living for isolated communities by facilitating the connectivity of the communities to Government, economic and development services. The restoration program is conducted on the airstrips that have deteriotated due to neglect and natural causes and are closed. After identifying and prioritizing of the airstrips that need restoration, an initial survey on the airstrip is conducted to determine the scope of work, what equipment is needed to fly in then the restoration work commence. When the restoration is completed, the airstrip is recommissioned and added to the RAA maintenance program.

Rural Airstrips Agency Ltd was established with the sole purpose of facilitating and conducting maintenance and restoration of rural airstrips in PNG. The RAA is a private- public partnership initiative with the Papua New Guinea Government.
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Two people from Sopu have been identified for further training as Airstrip Maintenance Officers. They will look after the airstrip with RAA and represent the local community involvement.

Captions:

The members of the local community, RAA and SIL Aviation representatives posing for a photo to commemorate the event at the Sopu airstrip.

Pic 2: View of the airstrip from a slope at Sopu.

Source: Rural Airstrip Agency Facebook Page.