In order to achieve better results for the 2023-2024 academic year as part of the Pentagonal Strategy, Prime Minister Hun Manet has suggested that relevant parties, especially the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, should continue to implement the education reform programme that has already been laid out and strengthen school governance.

In a letter dated November 29, Manet highlighted that December 1 signifies the commencement of school life for children who have just reached school age, particularly those in kindergartens and six-year-old children in primary schools. It also marks the beginning of a new academic year for students who have advanced to a higher class from the previous year.

"We can consider December 1 as the first day of the seventh mandate, initiating the implementation of priority policies related to the educational sector," Manet stated in the letter.

"The initial phase of the Pentagonal Strategy is dedicated to enhancing the quality of education, sports, science and technology, along with implementing key measures to address challenges and issues starting from kindergarten to primary school. This is our primary focus," he stated.

He added that these crucial activities encompass strengthening school governance, reviewing and revising curricula and extra-curricular activities to reinforce students' knowledge, discipline, morals and behavior. The government's responsibilities also extend to ensuring students' health, establishing a child nutrition programme and maintaining control over school food quality.

The letter highlighted that, in line with this approach, the education ministry has incorporated key elements in the "Model School Standards" for kindergartens through high schools.

Students started their first school day for the new academic year at Sangke High School in Sangke district, Battambang province on December 1. SANGKE HIGH SCHOOL

To place a greater emphasis on enhancing the discipline, morals, ethics, virtues and conduct of educational staff and students,

The ministry has introduced an assessment system consisting of knowledge (weighed at 80%), life skills (10%) and morals and good conduct (10%).

The prime minister also launched a nationwide "Trash Free Schools” campaign starting from the beginning of the 2023-2024 academic year, in support of the clean school competition.

"We have prioritised these policies, key measures and campaigns to transform schools into highly effective public service entities, promoting good governance and accountability to the people and the community," he stated.