Minister for Education and Culture, Hon. Myron Walwyn stressed that his Ministry is doing its best to ensure education continuity of the students and urged the community be understanding of the interim measures.
In a statement on 6 November to usher the start of the 2017/2018 academic year the Minister addressed educators, parents, students and the community. He lamented the reason for the delay and chronicled the move to the current position.
“We have had so many set-backs for the start of school this year; first with the flood rains causing a delay and then just as we planned to open, Irma visited and then 12 days after Maria passed through. However, with determination and hard work we are finally ready to start the school year, notwithstanding the many changes we have had to make. It is not and will not be business as usual for a period,” the Minister noted.
In offering reassurance the Education Minister stated that it was a journey to get to the point where school was actually starting. “I would like the public to know that a significant amount of work was done by the Ministry of Education, principals, teachers and other volunteers to enable our students to return to school following the passage of the hurricanes,” he said.
Some of the Territory’s students are currently learning in makeshift classrooms. However, Hon. Walwyn stressed that this is a temporary solution to the situation and alluded that some understanding should be employed.
“The physical school plant conditions that we are accustomed to have changed, but I want to assure parents and the community that much care, effort and thought was put into making sure the students and teachers are as comfortable as possible under the circumstances,” he stated.
The Minister explained that although the learning environment is compromised, the level of instruction was not. “We can guarantee that the quality of instruction will be at its usual high level and during the first two weeks of school, I will as Minister, along with my Permanent Secretary, Chief Education Officer and other education officers be visible at schools across the Territory to ensure that things are progressing well.”
“This school year will certainly be one of challenges, but I do believe that if we all work together, it can indeed be a very rewarding one,” he added.