More trained teachers to boost Education Sector

Guyana Chronicle
June 28, 2003

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GINA - THE Education Sector received a significant boost when a batch of 1968 trained teachers graduated from the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE), Turkeyen.

The graduates were implored by Prime Minister Samuel Hinds, who delivered the feature address, to upon their return to the classroom, seek to make learning attractive by placing emphasis on training and retraining.

The Prime Minister’s prize for the Best Graduating Student in pre-service was awarded to Shondelle Davis, while Aslam Haniff, copped the CPCE Prize, Rose Hall, in addition to the SSRP Best Graduating Rose Hall prize and the Ministry of Education prize for best overall in-service graduating student teacher.

Other outstanding perfomances were churned in by Winette Samaroo, Simone Rodney and Tamiswar Badhoo.

Prime Minister Hinds in his address, said that the Government would never delay the provision of adequate remuneration to such a vital sector as education, adding that education was the single factor to determine the wealth of the nation.

He stressed too that greater emphasis must be paid on teacher competency and attitudes which are critical to student learning.

CPCE Principal, Ms Cheryl Foster, in presenting a report on the operations of the institution, noted that the number of teachers who enrolled for training at the Secondary level, are “normally lower” than those enrolling for training at the nursery and primary levels.

According to her, in 2001, the enrollment for the nursery, primary, secondary academic and secondary pre-vocational levels was 520 students, while the figure in 2002 for the same levels was 582.

Ms Foster acknowledged that the numbers are low but said there is nevertheless evidence of improvement.

In addition, deficiencies exist in the students who enrolled in Mathematics and English Language, as well as deficiencies in oral communication skills.

The CPCE first began training teachers in September 1928, under the guidance of Principal Bain Gray.

CPCE is the principal training institute for teachers in the country and trains teachers from all administrative Regions.

From 1997 to 2002, over 1750 teachers were coursed in in-service and pre-service training, with 472 teachers graduating last year.

The CPCE Principal in her report, stated that relatively small numbers of student teachers enrolled from Regions One (Barima/Waini; Eight (Potaro/Siparuni)and Nine (Upper Takutu/Upper Essequibo), noting that only six students graduated from the Hinterland Region.

These graduates will be returning to their respective Regions to serve, the Principal added.

Ms Foster disclosed too that the institution's enrollment figure continues to show a larger number of females than males, which was quite evident in 2002/2003 where 181 males were enrolled as against 1003 females.

And though she contends the situation is stable, it still needs to be addressed.

The CPCE Principal charged the graduates to go on to conquer greater heights for themselves and the nation.

In recent years the Guyana Government has been paying much emphasis on the Education Sector and training of teachers, as evident in the increased allocation in the National Budget from $11.5B in 2002 to $17B in 2003.

Meanwhile special mention was made of the SSRP programme through which the CPCE received a computer laboratory; the Guyana Book Foundation; the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA); the Guyana Basic Education Trust (GBET); the Guyana Education Access Programme(GEAP) and the Basic Education Access and Management Systems (BEAMS).

Present at the ceremony too, were Mayor of Georgetown, Hamilton Green; Minister within the Ministry of Labour, Human Services and Social Security, Bibi Shadick; Chief Education Officer, Edward Caesar and Dr Rovin Deodat of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

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