All students will be able to access secondary education by 2025- Manickchand reaffirms

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More secondary schools are being built and revamped across the country and with this push, Education Minister Priya Manickchand reaffirmed that by 2025, Guyana will achieve universal secondary education.

This aim means that all students will be able to access secondary education, and it is a promise made by the incumbent People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) administration.

Manickchand, according to a press release from her ministry, made this comment during a recent visit to the forthcoming Yarrowkabra secondary school, near the Soesdyke- Linden highway.

See below the full release from the Ministry of Education:

With the construction of new secondary schools across Guyana, Minister of Education, Priya Manickchand said that Universal Secondary Education will be a reality by 2025.

Over the past few days, the education minister visited the construction sites of the St. Rose’s High School which is being rebuilt and the Yarrowkabra Secondary School which will be a new addition to the Soesdyke-Linden Highway. At this stage, the construction of the Yarrowkabra Secondary School should have been 60% completed but the project is currently 65% complete.

Sections of the Yarrowkabra Secondary School that is under construction (Photo: Ministry of Education)

The Minister of Education visited the construction site and expressed her satisfaction that the school is ahead of schedule which means that if work continues at its current pace, the school will be finished by May 2023 as per contract.

She said that the school will accommodate 600 students from Yarrowkabra and neighbouring communities along the Soesdyke-Linden Highway which were hitherto unserved by secondary education.

“I am extremely happy that we will be able to add this secondary school to our list of secondary schools in our quest to bring in Universal Secondary Education which we promised we would do,” Minister Manickchand noted.

She said that the new school will complement the already existing Yarrowkabra Nursery and Primary Schools in the community. The Education Minister said that the completion of the school will ensure that the Ministry does not have to place children who are exiting Primary School into Primary Tops and in fact would be able to close some primary tops that were opened or re-opened between 2015 and 2020.

Minister Manickchand conducting a walkthrough of the
construction site to observe how works are progressing
(Photo: Ministry of Education)

Further, she said that the Ministry will be able to cater better for children on the East Bank of Demerara with a new secondary school that is going to be built at Prospect. She said that this school will cater for 1000 learners.

Recently, the Education Minister also visited the construction site for the new St. Rose’s High School which she reported is on schedule with 55% of the works completed. These two new schools will be complete with modern classrooms, laboratories, industrial arts departments which will cater to TVET subjects, sanitary blocks and other auxiliary buildings.

Both projects went through the tendering process and the contract to construct the St. Rose’s High School was awarded to Shandong Degian International while the contract for the construction of the Yarrowkabra Secondary School was awarded to R.Bassoo and Sons. Each project has a consultancy firm attached which is supervising the quality and pace of ongoing works. Kalitech Inc. is the consultancy firm on the St. Rose’s High School project while Vikab Engineering will be working with the Yarrowkabra Secondary School project.

According to Minister Manickchand, the education system is now retaining more children in school, which is a good thing. However, she noted that this reality has placed some strain on space within schools.

She said that the rebuilding of St. Rose’s High School and the North Ruimveldt Secondary School, the construction of the Yarrowkabra Secondary School, the Good Hope Secondary School on the East Coast and the expansion of other schools such as East Ruimveldt Secondary, Queen’s College and the Bishops’ High School will create more space to accommodate the growing number of learners.

She said that these developments will provide comfortable access to secondary education.

Further, she said, “We’re working really hard to achieve universal secondary education within this first term [in office] is up. So, you will see two new schools going up in Region Three, one in Upper Mazaruni (Region Seven), one in Region One, the rebuilding of the North West Secondary School in Region One just to ensure we can bring in universal secondary education just as we were able to achieve universal primary education. So, you are going to see Universal Secondary Education before the end of 2025 and we will be very happy to do that.”

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