“Your value is not lost on us” – Education Minister to teachers

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“Your value is not lost on us. Your value is not lost on this nation,” were the words of the Honourable Minister of Education Priya Manickchand as she addressed teachers and headteachers on Tuesday during a luncheon held in their honour.

In observance of World Teachers’ Day, the Ministry of Education hosted a luncheon for teachers and headteachers from various levels. Minister Manickchand reminded teachers that their value to the nation will never go unnoticed.

“I believe strongly, the nation knows your commitment and knows how special teachers are,” Minister Manickchand told the gathering of educators.

Minister Priya Manickchand addressing the teachers

Minister Manickchand said that if ever the value of teachers was in doubt, the last year and a half proved that they possess a special skill and art in what they do to educate the nation’s children.

“Teaching is a calling, a calling that you have responded to and an art that you have developed over the years,” she remarked.

Further, she said, “This value is not lost on us. I want you to understand that at the level of the Ministry, that we understand your value. We know in the Ministry how valuable you are.”

She said that together, teachers and the Education Ministry have a duty to take the standard of education in Guyana higher and higher every year so that better and better results can be achieved.

The Education Minister said that she is happy that such a day is set aside to honour teachers and said that she hoped teachers across the country use the day to reflect on how important they are to every child.

She said that teachers can make a difference between children living a life of comfort or continue to live in poverty as an adult.

Additionally, she committed that teachers will see improved relations from the Ministry. She said that this will not be achieved with a ‘big stick’ approach but rather one where guidance is given to improve standards and levels of engagement.

Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson

Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson told teachers today that they are valued as professionals and also for the difference they make in the lives of children.

During his remarks, Dr. Hutson recalled how teachers made a difference in his life by encouraging him to work towards achieving a better life than he was exposed to as a youth. He said that every child is born gifted and teachers have the responsibility to nurture the gifts in every child so that they can reach their full potential.

During today’s luncheon, Ms. Francesca Vieira was also honoured for giving 50 years of service to the education sector.

Also, teachers Ms. Malkia Payne of The Bishops’ High School and Ms. Candida Williams of Queen’s College were honoured for writing the Portuguese Curriculum which began in April 2013. They trained teachers and prepared material to teach the subject in schools.

According to Minister Manickchand, it is because of the work of these teachers that the Caribbean Examinations Council is now offering Portuguese at CSEC across the Caribbean.

The subject was first written in 2017 with Guyana obtaining an 89% pass rate. She said that this is a representation of what persons are capable of when given the platform to deliver. (Ministry of Education Press Release)

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