Education Ministry bans Christmas parties at Secondary schools

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Education Minister, Nicolette Henry

The Education Ministry has made a decision to put an end to the annual Christmas parties at secondary schools across Guyana and instead, is asking schools to host properly supervised Christmas luncheons for students.

Generally, this activity is held in the last week of the term before students go on their Christmas break.

In a notice sent out to educators and teachers, the Ministry said an observation showed that the parties result in inappropriate behaviours from students.

The document further stated that there have been complaints by teachers in relation to the loud and inappropriate music played from music sets and the type of clothing worn by the children.

The new rules include that all students are to be dressed in their uniforms and the luncheon is to be organised by the class teacher and conducted per class. Only Christmas carols should be played during this time.

Adding to that, “optimum” supervision from the teachers are required at all times and the head teacher must be aware of all ongoing activities. This event should conclude by 14:30h. Those who do not wish to participate must also be placed under supervision.

Meanwhile, the Ministry has ordered for checks to be made for weapons, alcohol and illegal drugs.

However, Former Education Minister, Priya Manickchand has condemned this move in a social media post, stating that it implies that the Ministry is incapable of managing the schools in a manner which promotes social development.

“It seems that the Ministry is conceding that it is unable to manage schools in a way that gives children wide and varied experiences that allow them to learn and socialise, even as they are thought to do so in a responsible manner,” her post indicated.