The Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions across Guyana will now be fully equipped to facilitate online learning. The launch of the TVET Online Training was held today at the Government Technical Institute on Woolford Avenue.
Coordinator of the Skills Development and Employability Project (GSDEP), Theron Seibs explained that the initiative was birthed by the COVID-19 pandemic last year, when schools were closed. He said that the Caribbean Development Bank which is funding the GSDEP was approached to repurpose a part of the loan to purchase the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) equipment for the institutions.
After the approval was given by the CDB, Siebs explained that the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) was approached to fast track the purchasing of the items at a cost of over $65M. The equipment includes 138 laptops, 12 tablets, 40 camcorders, 128 projectors and 20 cloud storage devices.
These items will be distributed among identified Secondary Schools that are piloting the Caribbean Vocational Qualification and the 10 TVET institutions across Guyana which are:
1. The Government Technical Institute (GTI)
2. Linden Technical Institute (LTI)
3. New Amsterdam Technical Institute (NATI)
4. Guyana Industrial Training Centre (GITC)
5. Essequibo Technical Institute (ETI)
6. Upper-Corentyne Industrial Training Centre (UCITC)
7. Mahaicony TVET Centre
8. Leonora TVET Centre
9. Carnegie School of Home Economics (CSHE)
10. Craft Production and Design Department (CP&DD)
The Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson said that today’s launch and handing-over ceremony was a significant occasion as it relates to TVET. He said that the initiative to take TVET online is a testimony to how the sector can be improved. “We are keen on reforming TVET and you will see it manifested in our strategic plan, you will see that manifested in our budgetary allocation in terms of how we intend to reform TVET in our country”, the CEO noted.
He said that persons must adapt quickly so that Guyana does not find itself in a position where TVET education is stagnated. He said that the equipment that will be given to these institutions are integral to the transformational process.
Africo Selman, Advisor to the Minister of Education Priya Manickchand, said today that the Ministry of Education and the Government of Guyana have recognised that without ICT, concepts like equal access to education and education for all would simply be slogans.
She added that without ICT the teachings of educators cannot be dispensed equitably and fairly. Selman noted that the handing-over of the equipment takes the Ministry of Education and the Government of Guyana closer to eliminating the gaps between the coastland and the hinterland.