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BAHAMAS: Department of Education Mandates Online Special Education Didactic Training Series



#TurksandCaicos, March 11, 2018 – Providenciales – On Friday, January 19, 2018, Guidance Counsellors and Special Educators assigned to the TCIG public schools commenced their participation in an Online Training Series hosted by the Center for Children with Special Needs (CCSN) under the overall direction of Dr Michael Powers, an assistant Clinical Professor of Psychology at the Yale Child Study Center.

This training series is part of a comprehensive collaborative program consultation project between CCSN and the Ashley Learning Center in Providenciales under the passionate leadership of Mrs. Angela Williams-Valerio.  In May 2017, Mrs. Williams-Valerio facilitated the professional linkage between the CCSN and representatives from both the Ministries of Education and Health and a commitment was made to extend the benefit of the partnership between CCSN and the Ashley Learning Center to the Education and Health Sectors.

The Training Series consists of six training modules (2.5hrs each) designed to provide participants with an introduction to teaching principles that are guided by the science of applied behaviour analysis (ABA).  The topical areas to be covered in the series include conceptual knowledge, terminology, and a basic application of ABA that participants will be able to use to meet the individualised learning needs of students with Special Education Needs (SEN), including Autism Spectrum Disorder and other complex neurodevelopmental disorders.

During each session, a board certified behaviour analyst (BCBA) uses a tele-health platform to present information via a visual media-supported lecture (e.g. slides, video clips). At the end of the training series, it is expected that participants will be able to:

  • Identify the key features of evidence-based instructional procedures in both structured and unstructured environments.
  • Utilize individualized reinforcement procedures to increase student motivation.
  • Identify how antecedents and consequences are used to determine the function of challenging behavior.
  • Identify the difference between reinforcement and punishment with regards to the impact of each on student behavior.
  • Identify a functionally equivalent behavior to teach as an adaptive replacement for challenging behavior.
  • Identify various antecedent and consequence-based interventions and the impact of these interventions on student learning.
  • Embed visual supports to enhance student learning.
  • Describe the importance of on-going analysis and identify common methods for data collection.

A number of different CCSN Clinical Staff from various disciplines support this project with both direct and tele-health consultation. The primary instructors for the Training Series are Ms. Shaunessy Egan, M.S. Ed., BCBA, and Ms. Cali McGinn, M.A., BCBA from the CCSN’s base in Glastonbury, Connecticut. Ms. Egan is a BCBA and certified special education teacher who serves as a Program Coordinator at CCSN. She has experience providing direct instruction to learners with various needs, creating individualized curriculum adaptations, developing comprehensive educational plans, and consulting to school systems and families.

Ms. McGinn is also a board certified behavior analyst (BCBA) and certified special education teacher. She serves as a Senior Behavior Analyst at CCSN with experience providing consultative program development support to educational teams and experience implementing Positive Behavioural Interventions and Supports in schools. The training series will be further supported by Ms. Colleen Suzio, M.S., BCBA and Ms. Gosia Bochenska, M.S., BCBA, who also both serve as Senior Behavior Analysts at CCSN.

While the sessions have been made mandatory for all Guidance Counsellors and Special Educators in the TCIG public schools, the Department of Education has been keen to invite the participation and involvement of ALL educators within the public and private sectors. By the end of the second session which was held on Friday, February 16, 2018, some twenty-eight participants from both sectors had enrolled including the Special Educators assigned to Special Needs Unit’s SNAP Centre in the Ministry of Health.

It is expected that the next online session will be hosted on Friday, March 16, 2018. Education Professionals who would like to participate in these sessions may contact the Department of Education by emailing Ms. Sriya Smalling, the Educational Psychologist, at

Release: TCIG



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Caribbean News




The fastest internet just got even faster…for the same great price


Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – 1st, December 2021 –  Digicel+ is gifting The Turks and Caicos Islands faster home fibre speeds for Christmas, and beyond. Fulfilling the brand promise of Simply More (more power, more speed and more reliability), customers will now benefit from up to 2x faster download speeds on broadband and bundle plans.

This is all about a better experience for customers, and not about the cost. This free upgrade gives Digicel+ customers an even better home fibre internet experience, for anyone, on any device. And as part and parcel of the digital lifestyle, Digicel+ is the gateway to a Smart Life, which means that state-of-the-art Smart Solutions like Smart Homes and Smart Security are no longer just concepts, but a powerful reality.

Addison Stoddard CEO of Digicel TCI said, “This Christmas, we’re excited to reward customers with a super slick, superfast, super reliable home fibre experience, underpinned by service delivery that is, of course, second to none. Our entry-level plans are the fastest on the island and this puts us head and shoulders above any other internet offering in the country.”

The upgraded packages now start with download speeds of 50Mbps, and go up to 300Mbps for the speed demons and heavy gamers out there. This allows the Turks and Caicos Islands to connect to the global knowledge economy, have amazing entertainment options, and power their personal and professional experiences, thanks to these new superfast internet speeds.

Addison Stoddard continued, “It’s more of what our customers expect; more of what they want and it’s another way that we can be a part of our customers’ digital lives – at home, on the go, anywhere and everywhere. Simply put, Digicel+ is simply more.”

Over the past two years, the COVID-19 pandemic has solidified the importance of having a steady, powerful and reliable home internet connection, mainly due to many schools going online and parents working remotely. Now, with even faster internet speeds, customers get the best home fibre experience every time. This provides opportunities for MORE working, MORE schooling, MORE gaming, and MORE streaming with Digicel+.

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Bahamas News

Guys, Have 2 Minutes? Here’s How to Check Yourself for Testicular Cancer



Testicular cancer is a rare form of cancer for men in The Bahamas.  It is highly curable — if you know it’s there!


November 30, 2021 – Men…how often do you perform a self-exam to check yourselves for testicular cancer?

While it’s a relatively rare form of cancer, young men aren’t exempt – in fact, testicular cancer occurs most often in young and middle-aged men. The good news is, it can usually be treated successfully.

The most common symptom of testicular cancer is a lump on your testicle. But that’s not the only sign of this disease.

Men who have testicular cancer may experience several different kinds of symptoms, says oncologist Timothy Gilligan, MD, a Medical Oncologist at Cleveland Clinic who specializes in treating testicular cancer.

Testicular cancer most frequently strikes men younger than age 44, and is the most commonly diagnosed cancer for men ages 15 to 34. It is almost always curable if found early, Dr. Gilligan says, and it is usually curable even when at a later stage. So it’s important to know signs and symptoms.

Here, Dr. Gilligan says, are five possible signs of testicular cancer you might not know about:

5 Testicular Cancer Symptoms That Aren’t a Lump  – Know what to look for and catch it early

  1. A feeling of heaviness or pressure in your scrotum.
  2. Change in testicle size or firmness.Certain types of testicular tumors can reduce testosterone or increase estrogen in the body, which can result in a change in testicle size or firmness.
  3. Swollen legs.When a tumor spreads to the lymph node, it can constrict blood flow in the veins and result in a blood clot. The clots often occur in the legs, which causes them to swell. You might even experience blood clot symptoms such as pain and difficulty breathing.
  4. Lower back pain and shortness of breath.These are symptoms of advanced testicular cancer, meaning the cancer has spread to lymph nodes behind your stomach. Shortness of breath also may signal that the cancer has spread to your lungs, which may make it harder for air to move in and out.
  5. Breast growth or tenderness.In rare cases, hormone changes also can cause breast tenderness or growth of breast tissue. Some tumors can secrete high levels of a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG), which stimulates breast development.

If you experience any of these symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor right away, Dr. Gilligan says. If your physician diagnoses you with epididymitis or orchitis and the symptoms do not resolve quickly with antibiotics, request an ultrasound to evaluate for a testicular tumor.

“While up to 95 percent of men with testicular cancer are cured, it’s important to get care quickly if you’re experiencing symptoms because testicular cancers usually grow fast,” Dr. Gilligan says. “If there is disease, the earlier it is treated, the greater than chance for success.”


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PDM Deputy Leader lends to Beach Vending Bill debate from outside Parliament



By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer


#TurksandCaicos, November 30, 2021 – The Opposition party says the new Beach and Coastal Vending bill does not provide adequate protection for TCI vendors.

This came from Deputy Leader of the PDM Robert Been, in an open letter to the Speaker of the House of Assembly earlier today.

The Deputy Leader who claimed to be in direct contact with vendors in Sapodilla say while there are several provisions for penalties against the vendors in the bill it does not ‘adequately address the protection of vendors rights.’

The PDM referenced incidents of abuse from homeowners against vendors and said, “These homeowners, very often, insult and threaten vendors which is humiliating…There needs to be, in the law, something that clearly penalizes any overreaching harassment by property owners…situated near vendors.”

The Opposition deputy leader also said the Premier’s claim that the reshuffle of vendors will not affect their earnings was ‘misleading’ and ‘held no truth.’ They added that the section of roadway cited for the relocation was a known hazard and tourists would likely not frequent the area.

The PDM had several other requests to make the bill a more viable one for vendors. Been insisted that the government produce a timeline for the temporary relocation and allocate funds for a stimulus in case of loss of earnings on the vendors’ part. They also requested to see compulsory marketing for the vendor markets and questioned the lack of any clear avenue for redress should the government default on its promises.

Finally the PDM Deputy Leader called for CCTV cameras to be installed at every vendor site for both the protection of vendors and their wares and objectivity in conflict resolution.

The office of the Premier has not yet responded to the letter. The bill will be debated in the House today (November 30).


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