A clear sign of a shared political will to consolidate the integration of Martinique, the Ministers of Education of the Member States of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and the Secretariat of the OECS Commission met in Martinique on 27 and 28 February, as part of their annual orientation and follow-up meeting of the OECS Regional Action Programme, towards harmonisation and improvement of education systems.
Under the theme of ‘Equity and access for all’, this third meeting of the Council of Ministers of Education is aimed primarily at the continuation of the commitments made towards the harmonisation of the standards and programmes of education among the OECS Member States, including:
The search for bridges between the different educational systems; which is a top priority for the OECS;
Improvement of learning, in order to better prepare young people in the area to contribute to their environment, and ultimately to develop societies that are better able to develop.
Anguilla: Hon. Cora Richardson-Hodge, Minister of Education
St Kitts & Nevis: Hon. Shawn Richards, Minister of Education
Antigua & Barbuda: Hon. Michael S Browne, Minister of Education; Janis Rosa GREENAWAY Director General of the Ministry
Dominica: Hon. Petter Saint Jean, Minister of Education
St Vincent & les Grenadines: Hon. St Clair Prince, Minister of Education
Grenada: Sen. Hon. Simon Stiell, Minister of Education; Elvis Morain, Pedagogical Director of Education
Martinique: Sylvia Saithsoothane, Executive Counselor in charge of Education
British Virgin Islands: Hon. Myron V Walwyn, Minister of Health and Social Development
Montserrat: Hon. Delmaude Ryan, Minister of Education
OECS: HE Dr Didacus Jules, Director General of OECS; Marcellus Damascus Albertin, Director of the Social and Human Development Division.
An extract from the opening speech of Alfred Marie-Jeanne President of the Territorial Collectivity of Martinique reads: ‘One of the objectives of this 3rd Council of Ministers of Education on the theme’ Access and Equity ‘is to harness innovative ideas to contribute to the development of education in our Caribbean Continent. This is how the Territorial Collective of Martinique joins the ELAN Project carried by the Rectorate of Martinique. This project aims at regional cooperation in the field of education. Very concretely, it should make it possible to meet the following objectives:
Encourage the immersion of young people, training trainees, professionals, students and academics in the OECS countries;
Strengthen the linguistic mastery and the increase in competence of the young people of our respective territories;
Supporting innovation and research more efficiently between educational institutions of our respective countries;’
The representatives of the 10 OECS Member States will participate in these 2 days of work, under the chairmanship of Anguilla’s Minister of Education, and the co-chairmanship of the Executive Adviser in charge of Education, and presence of key regional and international partners in education development, such as UNICEF, UNESCO, Caribbean Development Bank, World Bank, USAID, West Indies University (UWI), and the Agency Caribbean Disaster Management (CDEMA).
Topics to be discussed include:
Strengthening multilingualism through the OECS: Language Assistant Project
Development Partner Support for Education in the OECS
UNICEF: UNICEF Support in the OECS
CBD: Regional Framework for Action for Mathematics Education (FAME) and the New Education and Training Policy and Strategy
USAID: Support to the OECS Education Development
World Bank: Education Financing, IDA Resources
UNESCO: New Vision for Integrating TVET in the Education System