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Head of the Presidential Secretariat (HPS), Dr. Roger Luncheon at his weekly press briefing disclosed contracts for the hiring of a literary specialist, international student testing and continuous specialist and a teacher training specialist within the Basic Education Access and Management Support Programme (BEAMS) were approved. The value of the contracts are: $874,276, $809, 351 and $304, 200 respectively.
BEAMS is a US$50M education developmental programme funded through the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB which would get underway this year.
The programme will address major aspects of the education system, these include school performance, organisational and human resources and infrastructure.
Under the school performance component it is proposed to improve the foundation of the early mastery of literacy and numeracy skills, develop pedagogical skills, create a stimulating educational environment, create equity in educational opportunities, enhance performance in poverty zones, improving diagnostic remediation services and effective teaching methods.
The introduction of modern technology into the teaching/learning programme will also form part of this component. This is in keeping with the national objective of introducing computer studies in all schools so as to prepare students to meet the demands of the technological world which has changed so much and is still continuing to rapidly change. Improving the capacity for a strong organisational base and the development of effective management and accountability systems and creating the capacity to monitor and evaluate the management information system will be the core of the organisational and human resource component.
Under the infrastructure component emphasis will be placed on increasing the capacity of school places in the education system in the movement towards universal secondary education.
BEAMS will be executed over a period of seven years in two phases through a soft loan. During the first phase it is anticipated that US$35M would be expended and the remaining US15M would be utilised in the second phase.
In the works sector a contract amounting to $303.2M was approved to do feasibility studies pertaining to the improvement of the southern approach to Georgetown, Dr. Luncheon reported.
A contract of $156, 312 for the provision of supervisory services related to the Mandela Avenue landfill site was also approved by Cabinet.