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Education Ministry places focus on equity in learning for students

Education Minister Dr Natalio Wheatley has announced a number of initiatives aimed at placing greater focus on equity and access to wholesome education for every child residing in the British Virgin Islands.

The minister made that statement against that backdrop that he has noted certain ‘gaps’ which COVID-19 has highlighted in the system.

“There are groups of individuals within our education system who are not being able to access the information and the education as much as everyone, and we want to make sure our education system caters to all,” Dr Wheatley said during a social media forum on Tuesday, September 8.

He further said one gap in the system has to do with students with special educational needs. 

“There are many parents and students who are almost in despair because they don’t feel as though the education system is fully catering to the needs of their young persons,” he stated.

The minister said while the current systems are reaping some results, there is a need to improve it. One of those solutions will be to employ who he described as a special education officer.

“In addition to having a special education officer, we are going to put together a council for special educational needs,” Dr Wheatley stated.

He said the Education Act 2004 also makes provisions for a special education council who would advise him and make certain recommendations for the betterment of special needs students.

The council would consist of parents, health personnel, a special education officer, principals, among other persons.

Veteran Education Taskforce

Dr Wheatly also said another body called the Veterans Education Taskforce (VET) will be established. VET would effectively serve as a support group for teachers and students.

“I gathered a group of veteran educators, and we had a very productive and positive meeting and these veteran educators agreed to form a group to be able to support the school system in various ways,” the minister explained.

In giving an example of the time of support the group would provide, Dr Wheatley said: “You might have a school with some particular struggles in reading, or perhaps a principal wants some mentorship for a struggling teacher. We have so many excellent educators who are retired who can still give service to the system.”

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  1. laughable says:

    Do not make me laugh. This guy is turning out to be a national disgrace to education. You, your CEO and entire crew need to step aside and let capable educators move this train forward. youall are failing and taking down an entire generation of youngsters with you.

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  2. No Clue says:

    So far behind the times, you have schools here already doing this. You have no clue the resources you have via your private institutions.

    • please tell says:

      well since you have the answer please share it so that we can know what you recommend

      • @please tell says:

        Solutions, examples and plans have been shared. Even suggesting pilot schools for reopening but they are so sheltered in their thinking that it must be a one size fits all approach. We have some very small schools that can easily reopen, they’ve met the requirements let them open and give parents the choice of either online or face to face learning.

        • Styler says:

          @please tell I quite agreed with you… The smaller schools can certainly open even a shift system can work, they prefer to have parents up and down looking persons to hold their children which makes no sense. Book sense beats Common sense.

  3. Shut up says:

    Thank God it is not like after Irma when 580 plus children was crammed into the CTL Builing, sharing 2 bathrooms. The building was poorly ventilated. Teachers and children had respiratory problems. We are thankful that we have an Education Minister and Government who are not making decisions base on politics but on health and well being of students and teachers.

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