Education Minister Carty Attends Regional Meetings

Minister of Education - Mr. Nigel Carty

Minister of Education – Mr. Nigel Carty
Photo By Erasmus Williams

Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
October 14, 2010 (CUOPM)

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of Education, Sen. the Hon. Nigel Carty is in Trinidad and Tobago for a meeting of the Finance and General Purposes Committee of the University of the West Indies.

The one-day meeting is taking place Friday at the St. Augustine Campus of the University of the West Indies.

From Trinidad, Minister Carty travels to Grenada to attend the UWI Open Campus Graduation Ceremony at which several students from Sty. Kitts and Nevis will be receiving degrees and certificates.

From St. Georges, Minister Carty goes to Guyana where he will join other Caribbean Education Ministers to tackle, in three days, a formidable agenda which spans a range of issues from early childhood to a harmonised regional tertiary education system.

According to the Georgetown-based CARICVOM Secretariat, the Twentieth Meeting of the CARICOM Council for Human and Social Development (COHSOD) will take place under the theme: Investing in Human Resources for the Benefit of All.

Education Ministers will treat with a range of issues including Regional Accreditation for Education and Training, Regional Standards for Teacher Education, Technical and Vocational Education and Training, (TVET) and Secondary Education Reform and CXC.

The first day of the COHSOD meeting will be highly participatory and interactive as it will be devoted to a panel discussion on Tertiary Education and a Policy Roundtable on Gender Differentials in Education.

With regard to the panel discussion, Vice Chancellor of the University of the West Indies, Prof. Nigel Harris, will present the lead paper for the panel discussion. Titled Towards a Regional Education System, the presentation will not only examine issues related to the development of a Regional Tertiary Education System but will also make specific proposals for the establishment of a Tertiary Education Council.

The panel discussion will also address issues in research and development and innovation and will focus on the systemic and structural requirements necessary for developing countries such as those in the Caribbean Community to benefit from investments in science and technology. The Panel will also explore the place of Technical and Vocational Education and Training at the tertiary level.

The Policy Roundtable on gender issues in education is being held in response to a specific mandate from the 18th COHSOD meeting in June 2009, following a discussion on the findings of a Study on Gender Differentials in Education.

The Study, funded by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), was conducted by the UWI Regional Centre for Gender and Development Studies and essentially revealed among other things, disparities in the treatment and performance of males and females in the regional education sector.

The Meeting will deliberate on those findings and consider, in detail, a draft Policy Framework for addressing Gender Differentials in Education. The Draft Framework resulted from a technical consultation organised by the CDB which included a wide range of stakeholders.

As the Community moves towards harmonising standards and raising the bar of excellence in Teacher Education, the COHSOD 20 Meeting will discuss a report from the Regional Task Force on Teacher Education. The Report speaks to the pivotal role of national and regional teaching councils and the development of standards in meeting the imperative of quality in Teacher Education region wide.

Additionally, the recently introduced Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) will be the subject of much deliberation at the COHSOD meeting. The full operations of the CARICOM Single Market, makes it necessary to develop a common system and understanding across the Region, of quality assurance issues at all levels of Education and Training, and portable qualifications especially in Technical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET).

The CVQ was introduced in 2007 to provide certification which would help facilitate the movement of artisans and other skilled workers within the Community. However, not all Member States have been offering this certification. The COHSOD is therefore expected to consider mechanisms for approval of additional Member States to offer the CVQ.

With regard to the panel discussion, Vice Chancellor of the University of the West Indies, Prof. Nigel Harris, will present the lead paper for the panel discussion. Titled Towards a Regional Education System, the presentation will not only examine issues related to the development of a Regional Tertiary Education System but will also make specific proposals for the establishment of a Tertiary Education Council.

The panel discussion will also address issues in research and development and innovation and will focus on the systemic and structural requirements necessary for developing countries such as those in the Caribbean Community to benefit from investments in science and technology. The Panel will also explore the place of Technical and Vocational Education and Training at the tertiary level.

The Policy Roundtable on gender issues in education is being held in response to a specific mandate from the 18th COHSOD meeting in June 2009, following a discussion on the findings of a Study on Gender Differentials in Education.

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