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2017 Supplementary Appropriation Bill 2017 passed.;

National Parliament of Solomon Islands

 
SOLOMON ISLANDS TERTIARY EDUCATION AND SKILLS AUTHORITY BILL 2016 PASSED

MONDAY 6TH MARCH 2017

Parliament has passed the Solomon Islands Tertiary Education and Skills Authority Bill 2016 on Wednesday the 1st of March 2017.

Minister of Education and Human Resources Development, Hon. John Moffat Fugui presented this Act in Parliament to provide for the establishment and operation of the Solomon Islands Tertiary Education and Skills Authority and for related purposes.

As was stated in its objects, the Solomon Islands Tertiary Education and Skills Authority Bill 2016 is to establish a legislative framework for an Authority with responsibilities: for strategic planning for tertiary education and skills development; and for quality assurance of tertiary education and skills development; and for assessing applications and proposals for funding for scholarships for tertiary courses and for the provision or improvement of tertiary education and skills development.

The reasons for the Solomon Islands Tertiary Education and Skills Authority Bill are that; the provision of tertiary education and skills development requires improvement to better meet the needs of local, regional and international labour markets and to facilitate recognition of our tertiary qualifications outside Solomon Islands; and improvements need to be made to ensure that funding decisions for tertiary education and skills development are directed towards meeting the needs of local, regional and international labour markets and are made in an accountable and transparent manner.

There are significant advances to be made for the benefit of the economy and community if the private sector and public sector come together to plan for an improvement in the quality of tertiary education and skills development and an increase in participation in tertiary education and skills development on a fair and equitable basis. The Authority is designed to be the vehicle for bringing the private sector and public sector together for those purposes.

It is proposed that a quality assurance framework for tertiary education and skills development will be implemented by the Authority. The framework will provide for accreditation of tertiary courses and registration of providers of accredited tertiary courses and sets standards and criteria to be met for accreditation and registration.
It is recognized that there will be a period where providers must be allowed to work towards making the changes required for them to meet all of the standards and criteria for registration.

The scheme is designed to facilitate regional and international recognition of tertiary qualifications obtained in Solomon Islands and, consequently, to improve the employment prospects of those who obtain such qualifications.

The Authority is proposed to be used as the vehicle for refocusing funding for tertiary education and skills development on meeting the needs of local, regional and international labour markets and improving accountability and transparency in funding decisions.

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