#Providenciales, June 7, 2019 – Turks and Caicos – Ministry of Education Officials explain that the Education Sector Plan 2018-2022 was crafted in response to concerns about overcrowding at public primary schools and the potential risk the overcrowding presented to the quality of education for young children. ‘Provide equitable access to quality learning opportunities’ is the charge the Ministry has given itself with the support of the European Union (EU).
“Improving education is top priority for both the Government and the EU. The support from the EU is aligned with the TCI Education Sector Plan and will allow the government to build more public classroom spaces to absorb the anticipated increase in enrolment that is forecasted in the coming years. It will also contribute to building disaster resilience,” said EU Ambassador, Her Excellency Malgorzata Wasilewska.
The issue of Overcrowding & Quality Education is being more than adequately addressed with construction started on a fourth government-run primary school in Providenciales. On March 28, 2019 the cornerstone was laid for Long Bay Primary School which will add 30 new classrooms and spaces for 550 students.
As far as Overcrowding & Quality Education is concerned there are two targets identified within the Education Sector Plan,. The first target focuses on improvement to access to quality education for students from ages 4 through to 16-years old while target two is focused on improving students’ access to high quality instruction through the development and implementation of an infrastructure and equipment modernization plan in each school by December 2018.
The pair of powerful storms dealt a harsh blow to the education sector of the Turks and Caicos Islands. At least four public schools were knocked out of commission and some 4,000 students were impacted by the damages which ranged from minor to severe.
The Education Sector Plan outlines the actions to ensure spaces are established and diverse enough for all students. It aims to increase ideal spaces for early childhood and secondary students; to smartly rebuild spaces lost or damaged as a result of the 2017 hurricanes; to increase capacity at current primary schools; build new classroom blocks to accommodate technical and vocation learning; and to upgrade laboratories for enhancements in the sciences and also for teaching and learning in vocation and technical disciplines.
The Ministry of Education, within the Plan has highlighted the need for monitoring the rate of enrolment for tertiary education; the number of Infrastructure Modernization and Maintenance Plans developed and implemented; the number of Ministry Staff trained to appraise school construction and building and equipment maintenance; the percentage of students completing at least one CVQ programme; the number of Special Needs children within public schools and the number of additional primary school spaces available in Providenciales.
“Improving the Education System in the TCI…..Together we can do it”