A leading NGO in Papua New Guinea says religious education in schools is necessary to teach moral values and lifeskills.
Schools in PNG have been told by the Education Department that by 2010 they must give five periods of religious instruction each week.
Margaret Sete of the Melanesian NGO Centre for Leadership says her organisation strongly supports the change.
"Currently in PNG in most primary schools and high schools and secondary schools we are seeing a new phenomena, a youth culture where young people are turning to cults, young people are turning into raskolism, because there is a lack of value in the curriculum that they have now."
Margaret Sete says in the past people had a better grasp of ethics and morals because most had attended mission schools.
She says there's a need for the teaching of life skills to prepare young people for adulthood, and the church run Scouts and Guides movements could help this.