“The Ministry of Education understands that optimising the early years of children’s lives is the best investment we can make as a society in ensuring their future success,” said Minister of Education, Nicolette Henry, at yesterday’s official commissioning of a Early Childhood Development Centre in Ithaca Village, West Bank Berbice.

According to Minister Henry, Early Childhood Education leads to fewer students being placed in Special Education in their primary years. She said that meeting a child’s needs early on will help them to better learn and retain the foundational skills and knowledge to help them succeed in their future.

She explained, “Early Education gives them a great jump start into learning. It also provides the platform needed to introduce good academic practices and training for our young intelligent minds.”

The Education Minister further stated that we must remember that a child’s brain develops rapidly during the first five years of life, especially in the first three years. She added that during these years, it is the time of rapid cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and motor development.

As such, Minister Henry highlighted the importance of the new facility and the services which it will provide to the community. She encouraged that the community makes full use of the opportunity in utilising the services of the centre and urged those that will execute the programme that maintenance and sustainability are vital in the longevity of the programme.

Meanwhile, Member of Parliament, Jennifer Wade, gave brief remarks and said that Early Childhood Education is the foundation of education and is important in order to raise the nation’s children the right way.

Also giving remarks was Deputy Regional Executive Officer of Region Five, Mahaica Berbice, Mr. Sherwyn Wellington. He said that the project aims at enhancing the delivery of early childhood development programmes for pre-schoolers in rural communities.

He said that the centre at Ithaca caters for at least 45 children. According to Wellington, the programme comes at a critical time when the evidence has shown that there is an upsurge of women entering the workforce and therefore, there is an increasing need for care outside of the immediate family.


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