The Government of Saint Lucia’s general objective for public education “is the continued quality adjustments and transformation of Saint Lucia’s education system by making it responsive to the needs of all learners and more aligned with the requirements of the 21st century labour market”.
This policy brief summarises the intent and key components of the special needs education policy and strategy. The policy and strategy aim to provide guidance for the Government of St. Lucia (GOSL) through the Department of Education (DOE) to effectively respond to ‘the needs of all learners and align the public education system with the requirements of the 21st century labour market’.
The policy is underpinned by a rights-based, non-discriminatory philosophy that equally values the presence, participation, and contribution of all children regardless of where they are on the abilities spectrum. The Education Act (2005) as the relevant legislation entitles all children the right to a quality education; this places a statutory obligation on the Government of St. Lucia to account for diversity and difference in the student population and provide appropriate resources, services, and support systems.
Within the context of the Caribbean region, the Government of St Lucia also shares ownership of the CARICOM Human Resource Development (HRD) Strategy 2023, as well as the OECS Education Sector Strategy (2021-2026). The philosophical core of these regional and international agreements is interrelated and, as such, along with the international conventions are an appropriate anchor for the policy and strategy.