Students paying teachers' wages after a PNG govt fail

10:53 am on 30 November 2023
Philip Aravure Primary School. October 2019

Philip Aravure Primary School. October 2019 Photo: / Philip Aravure Primary school

Students of a primary school in Port Moresby have been paying their teachers' salaries every fortnight since the start of the current school year.

Every week, the 2,800 students contribute one kina each to pay six teachers who otherwise would not be paid.

The Post Courier newspaper reports Philip Aravure Primary School in Gerehu endorsed the idea after a Parent and Citizen meeting last year.

The school's head teacher Robert Silas and his deputy Dales Ipara said they started with 12 teachers teaching without pay, but some have had their salaries restored but there are still six teachers dependent on the money from the students.

Ipara said each teacher gets at least 200 kina every fortnight depending on how much was collected or contributed from the students' donations.

This is topped up with the small profit made from the school canteen and the market tax collected from the mothers selling lunches within the vicinity of the school.

She said the PNG government's policies do not meet the demand and the needs of the school.

This week, the PNG Treaurer Ian Ling-Stuckey revealed a US$7 billion dollars budget, the highest in the country's history.

He assured the PNG people that things were getting better with "higher incomes and more jobs" on the horizon.