THE Ministry of Education will as of next year stop sending students to AMA University in the Philippines.
Permanent Secretary Dr Franco Rodie revealed this when he appeared before the Public Accounts Committee on Tuesday.
“We have finally decided to discontinue sending students under government scholarship to study at AMA as of next year,” Dr Rodie said.
The decision follows an assessment the ministry did into the status and reputation of AMA as an institute of higher learning.
“The government will continue to support those currently studying at AMA until they complete their studies,” Dr Rodie said.
“But there will be no more new intakes,” he added.
Dr Rodie also stated the ministry is looking at transferring some of the students studying in AMA to other recognised universities in Philippine, because their courses are well provided for in some other universities.
He said other universities in Philippine are well recognised with tougher requirement on admission, thus they encourage Solomon students in AMA to apply for those top universities in the Philippines.
He revealed that other universities in Philippine required students to sit an examination to determine their admission.
AMA came under parliament scrutiny earlier this year when leader of the Independence Group Dr Derek Sikua questioned the credibility and reputation of the university.
Dr Sikua said AMA University is nowhere to be seen in the ranking of world universities, which cast doubts over its accreditation as a tertiary institution.
And he warned Sikua warned AMA University could be a “money-making opportunity” by someone in the Solomon Islands government.
A ministerial review carried out after that found that to be true.
The government had allocated $130 million to cover the scholarships of the 512 students studying at AMA this year.
By AATAI JOHN