The Forum Secretariat became involved in education in 1999 at the request of Forum Economic Ministers who directed the Secretariat to convene a meeting of Education Ministers so that human resource development issues in the Pacific could be addressed.
Pacific Education Development Framework
Forum Education Ministers met in Tonga from 24-26 March 2009 and endorsed the Pacific Education Development Framework (PEDF) 2009-2015. This is a revised, updated and consolidated document that will replace the Forum Basic Education Action Plan (FBEAP) that had been in place since 2001.
The PEDF was developed after a comprehensive consultation process with all Forum Island Countries and it provides a broad platform for cooperation from a range of partners. Significantly, after much debate, Ministers decided to eliminate the word basic from the vision, which now reads: Quality education for all in Pacific Island countries. This broadens the potential scope of this key regional strategy document.
As the FBEAP is the foundation document for the PRIDE project and it also contains ministerial mandates from six ministerial meetings, it is not extinct, but will eventually be set aside.
History of Forum Education Ministers Meetings and the Forum Basic Education Action Plan
The first Education Ministers meeting was held in 2001 where the Forum Basic Education Action Plan (FBEAP) was adopted. At that meeting, Ministers requested that they be kept abreast of the implementation of the FBEAP and subsequent meetings have been held in 2002, 2004, 2005 and 2006. At each meeting the FBEAP is reviewed and added to.
The main vehicle for implementing the FBEAP is the PRIDE project, which is implemented by the University of the South Pacific.