Sunday 20 November 2022

From left – Right; Acting Deputy Secretary Digital Wing and Executive Manager Shed Service from the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Mr Robertson Asari, Deputy Secretary for Education Department Mr Walipe Wingi, ReeLae’s CEO and Co – Founder Samson Korawali, FODE Principal Mr Anthony Rayappan and a staff from SNS Tech taking a group photo after the agreement signing.

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) facilitated the signing of an agreement on  Friday 18 November 2022, between the Flexible Open and Distance Education (FODE), ReeLae and their technological partner SNS Tech, and the Department of Education (DoE), to commence the integration of the advance e-education pilot project.

ReeLae, a locally owned company will work in partnership with the Department of ICT team and SNS Tech to use technology to transform the educational landscape in FODE. 

It is expected ReeLae will commence a trial of the project with FODE in February 2023.

ReeLae’s CEO and CO-Founder Mr. Samson Korawali said the deployment of ReeLae’s technology will commence on November 28, in partnership with DICT’s Technical team, in alignment with DICT’s digital government plans.

Mr Korawali said ReeLae would work collaboratively with the DICT team, SNS Tech and FODE to use modern technology to transform the educational landscape for the benefit of our people.

“We are now ready to work on the e-education piece using the full pilot project as a starting point.”

Principal of FODE Mr Anthony Rayappan expressed the demand of this pilot project and how it can help improve the education system of the FODE curriculum.

 He said that it is the need of the day to embark on the technology of blended learning.  

“The traditional way of learning is not going away but technology is attracting more kids. We’ve seen over 60,000 students enrolled in FODE and the number increases every year”.

“We thank the partnership of the department of ICT and ReeLae and we’ll work together to bring about digital transformation in education,” said Mr Rayappan.

Deputy Secretary for Education Walipe Wingi emphasized the importance of education and how it can directly improve the society.

Mr Wingi said, “FODE came a long way, and to most, it is a failure, but to some, it’s not a failure, and a lot of improvements have taken place in FODE.

“Our curriculum in FODE is the same thing as the mainstream curriculum.  Even the certificates attained are the same as that of the mainstream which is signed by the Secretary of Education,” said Mr Wingi.

“Whatever worked well yesterday, is obsolete today, and appreciate the government’s ICT Department to ensure the country is digitalized.

 “We appreciate ReeLae and others who will partner with us to make sure we overcome these challenges and look forward to improve on any challenges,” said Mr Wingi.

Meanwhile, DICT’s Executive Manager for Digital Governance and Shared Services Mr. Robertson Asari, stated, the Department anticipates a road map in the next five years in this journey, in what is called digital transformation for the whole country, as stated by Mr. Asari expressed the department’s level of focus on bringing access to basic services to the people of Papua New Guinea.

“The whole global economy is driving through digital technology, and that is where the journey is for us.

“I am grateful to say that through this journey, we’ve helped the Department of Education to integrate ICT over the last few months.”

Mr Asari added that ReeLae as a local company is doing well to drive this agenda out and DICT is in full support of that.

“We want more of that, and it is enlightening for the Department to support such agenda, the reason being that we have to grow, and we have to show that Papua New Guineans can do it, and Papua New Guineans must do it. Papua New Guineans must solve the problem,” said Mr. Asari Mr. Asari concluded that the department will provide all the support that it can from policy to implementation and coordination, and will look at curriculums and programs, and how the department with collaborative partners, will scale that into the systems that will support the whole digital ecosystem.