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Niue

Overview

Niue, is a small island in the South Pacific, east of Tonga, consisting of about 1500 people in 14 villages. Village life represents Niue's cultural and political organization. Niue, a former possession of New Zealand, has been self-governed since 1974. All Niueans are also citizens of New Zealand. The Niue government is committed to increasing the country's economic self-reliance, but remains dependent on assistance from New Zealand.

Tourism offers the most significant prospect for economic development, but its advancement depends on improved air services. Niue suffers from a declining population through migration and limited physical resources which also limits opportunities for development.

Languages are English and Niuean, a Polynesian language closely related to Tongan.

Education

Efforts are being made to improve the quality of early childhood, primary and secondary education. An educational development project has as its main objective to implement the New Zealand Qualifications Framework.

The language of instruction in the Niue elementary and secondary schools is Niuean and English. Secondary education includes both academic and vocational courses. For many students, New Zealand is their second home, so the education system currently used in the country is modeled along the New Zealand system.

Tertiary education is typically continued in New Zealand, Fiji, Samoa or Australia. Teachers have been recruited from New Zealand due to a shortage of local teachers. Declining school enrollments are also an issue.

Before the mid-1990’s, the educational model used in Niue was 7 years of primary education, and 5 years of secondary education. Since the mid-1990’s the system has changed to a 6+6 or 7 year model.

Primary and Secondary Education

Primary education lasts for six year, ages 6–12. Secondary school lasts for 6 to 7 years, ages 13-19. At the end of Grade 11 (also called Form 5), students are awarded a Form 5 School Certificate.

Secondary school continues for an additional I year, Form 6, and students are awarded the Form 6 Certificate at completion of grade 12. Students may enter one of a number of vocational, technical, or job apprenticeship programs, or they may enter pre-university courses at the University of the South Pacific (USP). Some students may go on to complete one additional year, Grade 13, or Form 7. The Form 7 Certificate with 5 pass grades allows access to the bachelor degree program at USP.

Post-Secondary Education

The only post-secondary education available in Niue is an extension center of the University of the South Pacific. Students with the Form 6 Certificate are eligible to enter post-secondary technical or teacher training programs. Students may also be admitted to the one- or two-year pre-university preparatory programs at USP. Students who complete Form 7, grade 13, may be admitted to university study.


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