Some 40 teachers from the ten administrative regions are being given practical sessions in aquaculture so they can better teach lessons in schools.
The training for teachers who teach aquaculture at schools that offer Technical, Vocational Education Training (TVET) was carried out at the Satyadeow Sawh Aquaculture Station, Mon Repos, East Coast Demerara, under the Fisheries Department of the Ministry of Agriculture.
The two-day training will focus on how to rear, feed and catch tilapia.
According to the Officer in charge of Aquaculture at the Ministry of Education’s TVET unit, Yonnette Crandon, the training is necessary to help teachers in building a resilient workforce from the school level.
“Most students leaving school may have CXC but they don’t have the practical knowledge.
“This is a practical component,” she said, adding that it will allow students who leave school to “go straight into the job and actually perform.”
“There is a demand for aquaculture, hence we have to introduce it to the schools,” Crandon stated.
In agriculture, there are six Caribbean Vocational Qualification programmes and she explained that aquaculture training covers inland aquaculture, tilapia production and fish handling and processing.
During the morning session, teachers were introduced to several important techniques for fish farming. Nakita Dookie, the principal fisheries officer at the Mon Repos Aquaculture Station, said the exercise will support the theoretical instruction.
“We formulated a curriculum, developed the training material and then executed the practical session
“Today, what we are going to go through is teaching them water quality testing, that is important for the survival and good production,”
Teachers will leave the sessions knowing how to identify the fish gender, cleaning the pond and using different devices for the production.
According to Crandon, with the oil and gas industry, other sectors are booming and aquaculture is on the rise with the demand for protein. She said that through the Caribbean Vocational Qualifications many persons can qualify for jobs in this area and by ensuring teachers are aware of the technology and skills, the students can be well trained for jobs.
Government itself has placed massive emphasis on aquaculture security in the country. With millions injected into the sub-sector, Crandon said these sessions are beneficial as they ensure Guyanese can benefit from employment opportunities.