Jayapura, 5/5 (Jubi) – Papua’s education department has confirmed the closure of a school at Yambi Sub-district in Puncak Jaya Regency after no pupils attended classes because of the presence of an armed group.
“It’s true there is a one-roof school consisting of elementary, junior and high schools at Yambi Sub-district to be closed. Because it’s located at the OPM (Free Papua Movement) base, no pupils went to the school,” the Head of Education and Cultural Department of Province Papua, Elias Wonda told reporters in Jayapura on Monday (5/5).
“Yambi located at the mountain area is actually been in the Sinak area. It only has one entrance and surrounded by the mountain. So it’s difficult to access while there is also the OPM base. I have been there. The place was empty, only some of OPM members who live there,” he said.
He further said the access to the Central Highland areas is isolated so it’s difficult for his office to access the existing schools out there. “Children who are going to the school should take one or two days travel from one village to others which live around 5-10 families,” he said.
To resolve this case, the Education and Cultural Department will create a boarding school program where the pupils of the 4th-12th grade of the elementary school and the junior and senior high school would be placed in the boarding house to study at the One-roof school while the 1st-2nd grade of the elementary school would remain study at their village school. The department is planning to build the boarding school this year but they still have a lack of budget since the education budget was dropped to all regencies/municipality.
“It’s our future program to response the shortage of teachers. So all teachers of the entire grades would be able to educate,” he said.
“We hoped we could build it next year. Currently ther are five pilot regencies and it has been discussed with the Papua Parliament. Basically the parliament has agreed. After we received the funds, it could be answer the shortage of teachers and schools at the remote areas by implementing the boarding school system,” he said.
He added the five pilot regencies are Yahukimo, Lany Jaya, Puncak Jaya, Boven Digoel and Dogiyai.
“In the sixties to eighties, the quality of education in Papua was regarded as excellent. But in the 2000 ear, its quality was dropped. Therefore, we are trying to revitalize the education in Papua,” he said.
Earlier, the Governor of Papua Lukas Enembe said the education in the villages need to be managed and the best model should be established, including to develop a system to reduce the gap in education, therefore the graduates from the village areas and the urban areas have the equal quality.
“The education in the villages needs to be well managed. It’s important to be implemented to ensure the graduates from the villages have the same quality with the graduates from the urban areas. So they could have the same competencies to be competed to get the job opportunities,” the Governor Lukas Enembe said. (Jubi/Alex/rom)