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Tuesday, 28 September 1971
Page: 1599

Mr Stewart asked the Minister for External Territories, upon notice:

How many children in the Territory of Papua New Guinea are unable to obtain:

(a)   primary, and

(b)   secondary school education.

Mr Barnes - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

The matter referred to is one which falls within the authority of the Ministerial Member for Education in the House of Assembly for Papua New Guinea. The Administrator on the advice of the Ministerial Member for Education has provided the following information: (a) An estimated 359,800 children in Papua New Guinea are in the 7-12 age bracket. 223,091 children - are in primary schools that are members of the Papua New Guinea education system. There is a small number of schools which are not members.

It is difficult to estimate how many of the 7-12 age group are not in primary schools for the age of students in the different types of primary schools varies from five years to sixteen plus.

The proportion of school-aged children in primary schools varies from district to district. Current policy recognises these existing inequalities in educational provision and looks to holding current percentages by minimal enrolment increases in districts where there are currently over 50 per cent of the school-age population, with emphasis upon increasing enrolments as rapidly as possible in the districts where this figure has not as yet been, achieved. Pursuant to such policy, those districts with the lowest percentage enrolments have been allocated the majority of additional teachers becoming available, (b) Approximately 60 per cent of students completing a primary education are unable to obtain a place in secondary schools.

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