Education Ministry formally launches US$55M improvement project

Guyana Chronicle
March 26, 2003

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THE Ministry of Education formally launched the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) funded US$55M Basic Education Access, Management Support (BEAMS) programme at Georgetown Club in Camp Street on Monday.

Officials said IDB will provide US$50M and Government of Guyana US$5M.

Education Ministry Chief Planning Officer, Ms. Evelyn Hamilton said the project is a comprehensive operation to provide a sustainable framework for enhanced educational sector performance.

She said it spawns from nursery to secondary level learning and was designed as part of an education development scheme.

The BEAMS goal is to contribute to sustainable socio-economic development and equitable poverty reduction in Guyana, Hamilton told the gathering, including Education Minister, Dr. Henry Jeffrey and IDB Representative, Mr. Sergio Varas.

She said, for the aim to be achieved, some main areas for attention include performance and civil works, which involve physical upgrading and greater access to schools.

Other objectives of the drive, which began in February 2001, are to target poverty zones and improve literacy and numeracy through the primary cycle.

The first of two phases, during a period of four years, would cost some $US30M and the second should be completed in the following three years.

Hamilton said the process entails going into various regions and enquiring from people what problems they face in the education sector.

Ministry Jeffrey said the ministry realises schools have to be rehabilitated and that there is greater need for better education in remote places and BEAMS would aid solutions to those difficulties.

He said the ministry is willing to work collectively or individually with anyone to better the quality of learning in the system and Varas pledged the commitment of his institution to collaborate with the Government towards the successful implementation.

The thrust would also see the construction of new secondary schools and rehabilitation of others in several "underserved" areas, officials disclosed.

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