BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — The Ministry of Education has and will continue to make significant strides in its education system, says Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education, the Honourable Shawn Richards, adding that the ministry will continue to move towards the realization of goals outlined in the 2017-2021 Sector Strategy Plan.
During his New Year’s address to the nation, Minister Richards said that the sector plan has as part of its overarching goals improving equitable access to and participation in education at all levels, improving learning outcomes by strengthening the quality and relevance of education at all levels, and enhancing governance planning and management to improve efficiency and effectiveness.
The minister said that within those areas noticeable progress has been made.
“For example, as it relates to improving equitable access to and participation in education at all levels, there have been targeted initiatives to increase, for instance, the percentage of children who have access to quality early childhood education.
He added that the enhancement of training of officers at every level within the early childhood sector, the assessment of the monitoring and evaluation frameworks, as well as programmes such as Reach the Unreached, continue to “keep early childhood well on track within the sector strategy plan.
“At the primary and secondary levels, greater attention is being given to ensure that more children advance through the education system with meaningful educational experiences, he said. “At the secondary level, for example, all students are to advance to form five instead of some students exiting school at the end of form four.”
A considerable amount of work was done in 2018 to improve learning outcomes. This was done by strengthening the quality and relevance of education at all levels.
In 2019, Richards said teachers at all levels will continue to be exposed to timely and relevant training programmes including the Early Learners Programme (ELP) at the primary level and differentiated instruction.
“Such training programmes are aimed at helping teachers to better hone their skills and competencies to deliver meaningful instruction to our nation’s youth.