The Solomon Islands Minister for Education and Human Resources Development, Hon. Dick Ha’amori is in the process of establishing Waimapuru and King George VI National Secondary Schools as independent secondary schools under their own Education Authorities.
A review of the education structure in 2010 recognized that the management and governance of the two state-run schools was not the core business of the Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development.
Over the years the ministry has taken a ‘hands-off approach to the two schools.
The schools now have Boards to advise and inform the Ministry, but now the schools are being transitioned to take over the governance and management of their own affairs.
The new approach saw the appointment of members to the inaugural KGVI school Board in November 2013.
The schools are currently under the control of the Ministry until the Minister authorizes the establishment of the Education Authorities as required by the Education Act.
Under these new changes, the Ministry is keen to develop these schools into centers of excellence where teachers can model good practice and new initiatives can be tested.
The two schools have been receiving considerable financial support from the government and this has given them major financial advantage over other secondary schools.
The intention is that the two schools’ future funding is similar to that received from the MEHRD to other secondary schools but this transition is gradual.
They may receive additional funding for pilot projects designed to investigate opportunities to improve the quality of secondary education throughout the education system.
“Placing the schools under Education Authorities is seen as an opportunity to provide more effective management of the schools, improve student achievement, provide strategic direction and lessen their need for the current level of government financial assistance,” says the Acting Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education, Franco Rodi.
The move to school-based management will allow the board to set policy to give the schools direction as well as improving accountability. The schools will become models of school-based management in Solomon Islands.
Mr Rodi says this bold move creates a very exciting and positive future for the two schools.
Source: Press Release, Government Communications Unit