Dr. Geoffrey Hanley, Minister of Education Addresses OAS Inter-American Council for Integral Development

The Honourable Dr. Geoffrey Hanley, St. Kitts and Nevis' Minister of Education.
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Washington D.C. – At the invitation of the Chair of the Inter-American Council for Integral Development (CIDI), Saint Kitts and Nevis’ Permanent Representative to the OAS, Ambassador Jacinth HenryMartin, the Honourable Dr. Geoffrey Hanley delivered an enlightening presentation at the third regular meeting of CIDI, focused on the theme: “Connectivity and Technology for advancing education and Human Development in the Americas”.

The Honourable Dr. Geoffrey Hanley, St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of Education.

The meeting was convened to explore how member states can address the educational and human development divide in the Americas, specifically considering the inequitable access to connectivity and infrastructure, as well as the expanding capacity gap in responding to change.

Minister Hanley reflected on how the Federation seized upon institutionalizing technology as a fundamental building block of our education system in its quest to overcome systematic injustices, poverty, and a paucity of resources. Guided by the theme “Transforming Education through Self Renewal, Holistic Partnerships and Digital Solutions”, the Minister expounded on his Ministry’s transformative agenda in reducing the educational inequalities provoked by the COVID-19 pandemic, bridging the digital and pedagogical gap and empowering students to develop a diverse set of skills from digital
literacy to problem solving, in the process cultivating a skilled workforce equipped to thrive in the digital economy to drive sustainable development.

Minister Hanley posited, “I am cognizant that technology opens doors to entrepreneurship, offering a myriad of opportunities for business development and innovation.”

He cited the value of access to technology in advancing human development, and remarked that, “it is even more critical for vulnerable populations including the elderly,
persons with disabilities and the economic disadvantaged” to be afforded such access.

In addition to sharing the Federation’s best practices in connectivity and technology which could be replicated across the Americas, the Honourable Minister also capitalized on the opportunity to emphasize the importance of building holistic partnerships with member
states to procure technology as a block to increase economic reach, and to negotiate with international organizations and non-governmental organizations to ensure the sustainability of government-initiated programs.

In concluding his presentation, the Minister surmised, “as we harness the transformative power of technology, let us continue to nurture a culture of connectivity, inclusivity,
empowerment, and opportunity for all towards a brighter future for the people of the Americas.”

The Permanent Mission of Saint Kitts and Nevis to the OAS continues to advance its mandate of creating spaces for the Federation’s advancements to be highlighted for recognition by Member States of the OAS, and for our best practices to serve as a template for adoption by sister states across the Americas.

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