Formally launched on September 2, 2019, Education Month incorporated numerous activities throughout Guyana under the theme Education: The Key to National Development. Dr. the Hon. Nicolette Henry, Guyana’s Minister for Education, addressed the crowds at the opening event staged at the Ministry’s Sports Ground, Carifesta Avenue.
She explained that, led by His Excellency, President Granger, the Guyanese government believes that education is vital to national development. Put simply, if education fails, then the nation fails too. This is what you need to know about Education Month in Guyana:
Funding for Education in Guyana Is Being Increased
Minister Henry told the audience that, in 2019, approximately $52.2 billion in funding had been allocated to education, representing a 15 percent increase in government spending. Henry said that the investment in education was critical to national development, explaining that the government had made it a priority to bridge the gap between the Coastland and the Hinterland in terms of the formal education system.
Guyana’s Education Minister pointed out that progress and development in Guyana was wholly dependent on the country’s citizens. She said that education is a vital part of the process, explaining that development of the country could only occur through the development of its people.
Henry affirmed that the education sector is performing well, explaining that its success is made possible through the dedication and commitment of each person serving within the sector. The Minister for Education praised teachers, Ministry staff, and education officers for all of their hard work, commitment, and dedication that culminated in high performance throughout the country’s education sector.
Education Month Represents a Fresh Start for Guyana
During his presentation, Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson told the audience that Education Month 2019 marked the start of a fresh chapter in the history of Guyana’s education system. He said that progress made as a country cannot be achieved without progress in education.
Dr. Hutson said that the nation must do all within its power to enrich and protect its human resources, asserting that education performs numerous functions throughout society, including the instilling of social norms, culture and tradition, and values and beliefs in the next generation. Education facilitates career selection, social integration, patriotism, rational thinking, and socialization.
Addressing the crowd of young students, the Chief Education Officer urged them to focus on their learning in the classroom and treat all of their teachers with respect. He encouraged principals and teachers to continue leading and teaching with purpose, safe in the knowledge that they were liberating and enriching the minds of the nation’s young people.
About Education Month in Guyana
Led by the Ministry of Education, Guyana celebrates Education Month every September. The Ministry staged more than 20 different events and activities across Guyana as part of Education Month 2019, each intended to engage stakeholders in education.
The launch of Education Month 2019 in Guyana was marked with performances by the National School of Dance, South Ruimveldt Secondary School, and the Buxton Steel Orchestra. The launch came in the wake of President David Granger declaring 2020 to 2029 Guyana’s “Decade of Development.” He announced that the government would be utilizing oil wealth to expand education development projects that had been set in motion in recent years.
The Guyanese Government has placed huge emphasis on development and investment in its education sector since 2015, producing impressive results. In 2019, Guyana recorded its highest pass percentage in the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate Examination, with marked improvements across all Regions of Guyana in National Grade Six Assessment Mathematics results.
Education Month Stakeholders and Events
As Minister Henry explained at the launch of Education Month, education provides individuals with the knowledge and wherewithal to be creative, innovative, and solve problems effectively. These are skills that will benefit them each and every day of their lives. She warned that for the nation, education is vital, particularly for the country’s children.
Henry went on to thank all of various stakeholders in the sector, reminding them of the crucial role they play in making such progress possible. She referred to the adage, it take a village to raise a child, underlining the hard work, dedication, and commitment it takes to educate an entire nation. Minister Henry told the crowd at the launch of Education Month 2019 that teachers, principals, parents, education officials, and supporting partners all had a vital part to play in the process.
Guyana’s Education Month 2019 hosted a variety of different events staged across the country, including: International Literacy Day; STEAM in Education; Mural Painting at Kingston Seawalls; The National Spelling Bee; JOF Haynes Debating Competition; Special Needs Sports Day; and the Music and Drama Festival.
GBTI Supports Education Month
As the nation’s longest-serving bank, GBTI is proud to support Education Month. The financial institution sponsors a variety of projects supporting young people across Guyana, including its annual Bursary Awards, which provide bursaries to 15 GBTI Early Savers who pass their National Grade Six Assessment exams.