[www.inewsguyana.com] – Teacher training is a major area of focus for the Education Ministry, and yearly, the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE) turns out large numbers of graduates. At its 80th graduation ceremony at the National Cultural Centre on December 19, 359 more persons were certified as trained teachers.
The ceremony which was held under the theme “21st Century Pedagogical Transformers” saw the graduates gaining certification in three categories: the Associate Degree in Education, the Trained Teacher’s Certificate and the Teacher Upgrading Programme.
Duviena Badray of the Region Two, Anna Regina Satellite Centre copped the top performer position along with the Prime Minister’s Prize as the Best Overall Graduating Student. She also won the Vice Principal’s (Development) Prize for being the Best Overall Graduating Student in the Distance Education Primary Programme and the Chief Education Officer’s Prize for being the Best Overall Graduating Student in the Distance Education Programme in Teaching Practice.
A number of her colleagues also received prizes for their respective performances in varying specific subject areas along with the Guyana Improving Teacher Education Programme (GITEP).
Some of the individuals included Loiselle Robinson of (Region One), Anyanna Peters of (Region Three), Muneshwar Baskaran (Region Four), Livia Gentle (Region Five), Shemaine Caesar (Region Six), Sylvester Tobin (Region Seven), Floyd Rodrigues (Region Nine) and Clair Ramesar (Region 10).
Speaking at the ceremony, CPCE Principal, Viola Rowe, during the presentation of her report, pointed out that 50 of the graduates are trained to cater to the Early Childhood Education level, while 120 are trained to offer Primary Level Education.
A total of 189 are trained to deliver Secondary Education. She noted that challenges such as recruiting part-time staff, with the right skills to supervise students on their in-school practicum resulted in full-time staffers having to facilitate in this regard in order to compensate for the shortfall.
She however added that unlike the previous reporting period where several classes were left unattended, this was not the situation this time round, for which she credited the effective timetabling and improved departmental management by section heads and coordinators.
Noting that there are also challenges in specialised subject areas, the principal said nevertheless the students benefited from general course offerings in those areas which were made possible through the successes under the GITEP Programme.
During the charge, Former Chief Education Officer, Ed Caesar, told the students that they should use Martin Luther King’s words as guidance. He quoted; “if you can’t fly then run; if you can’t run then walk; if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
He also urged the graduates to build on what they have learnt and to maintain good relationships with their teachers and students.
There are 15,055 teachers at the CPCE spread across four programmes in nine administrative regions. The two-year associate degree programme is offered to coastal students, from Anna Regina, Linden, Georgetown, New Amsterdam, Rose Hall, Vreed-en-Hoop and Turkeyen. In September 2014, more than 513 persons enrolled for this programme.
For the trained teachers’ certificate three-year degree programme, 69 students from Moruca, Mabaruma, Aishalton and Lethem enrolled.
The teacher upgrade two-year programme had an enrollment of 250, some of whom are accessing satellite training in Moruca, Mabaruma, Port Kaituma and Upper and Lower Mazaruni.
Teacher training will also include training for teachers in the technical field on a one-year programme. This new programme was set up for teachers in technical institutes and Technical Vocational Education programmes. [Extracted and modified from GINA]