While noting that many early childhood centres were damaged by Hurricane Irma this month, education minister Myron Walwyn announced that early childhood centres are being set up and a special programme is being implemented to assist children as early as 3 years old.
He said the programme, which will run until November 6, is being offered through support from agencies such as Convoy of Hope and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
“Beginning October 5, we will be ensuring that all children ages 3 to 8 years old will receive daily learning sessions and meals between the hours of 9am and 3pm at centres that will be set up around the territory in the various districts as a means to provide some level of normalcy for our students and their parents,” the minister said, adding that the service will also be available to students that attended Eslyn Henley Richez Learning Centre.
Walwyn disclosed that the early childhood centres will be located at: Capoon’s Bay Basketball Court, Sea Cows Bay Methodist Church, Old Recreation Grounds, Baugher’s Bay Basketball Court, East End Football Grounds, Bregado Flax Educational Centre parking lot, and Claudia Creque Educational Centre school grounds.
He noted that the formal education system, under normal circumstances, caters to children from age 5.
“We have however recognised that many of our early childhood centres have been damaged by the hurricane, and so we are making an exception to provide this service for children as early as 3 years old.”
“We will be providing this service for children between 3 and 5 years old up to November 6, 2017, which is the start of the new academic term. We are hopeful that, by this date, enough early childhood centres would have had a chance to reopen and be able to accommodate the younger children,” added Walwyn.
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