The Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE) today graduated its largest batch of trained teachers in the history of the College. This was announced by the Principal of the CPCE, Dr. Viola Rowe while presenting the Principal’s Report at the 87th Graduation Exercises of the College.
The Graduation Exercise was held in a hybrid format, with participants and graduates using Zoom and those receiving special awards attending the ceremony in person.
According to Dr. Rowe, this batch of trained teachers was engaged by the traditional face to face modality, the blended print-based and face to face modality as well as the online modality.
She said the January 2022 Graduating Class now holds the record of the largest graduating batch with its 843 trained teachers, of which 198 are Early Childhood trained, 404 Primary trained, and 241 qualified for the Secondary level.
She added that of the 843 students, 198 pursued the Trained Teacher’s Certificate (TTC) Programme and 645 pursued the Associate Degree (ADE) in Education Programme.
Dr. Rowe said that during the reporting period the College experienced an astronomically high demand for teacher education with an enrolment of 2664 first-year applicants.
The Principal noted that before the 2021 reporting period the online application was unavailable which perhaps restricted knowledge and applications for potential students.
Further, she said that enrolment size was restricted due to physical space and dormitory capacity for pre-service students. She said that the College experienced the effectiveness of technology as a contributor to the number of applications received online for the reporting period.
Dr. Rowe said that the increase in teacher demand is also credited to the clarion call by the Honourable Minister of Education Priya Manickchand for all untrained teachers to register at the College in keeping with the strategic plan to have 100% trained teachers in the Education system.
Moreover, Dr. Rowe said that the College continued to operate its 19 centres across the ten administrative regions with some programmes being expanded. The ADE programme was previously offered at eight centres but is now being offered at nine additional centres while the TTC is now being offered at 16 centres compared to the 11 centres in the previous reporting period.
Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson said that it is the Ministry of Education’s vision that the college becomes the premier teacher training institution in the region. He said that it is clear that education is a vital ingredient that provides a way of escape from the vagaries of life. “This benefit has become increasingly important because social changes today take place with increasing speed and affect the lives of more and more people. Education is, therefore, the vehicle through which persons understand these changes and are provided with the skills for adjusting to them,” he noted.
It is against this background Dr. Hutson said that the CPCE must be considered as the vanguard and bedrock of our education system and must do everything within its power to protect image by producing teachers of quality.
He said that the performance of the graduates this year was encouraging and challenged the administration of the College to improve its performance at every Graduation Exercise.
The Chief Education Officer noted that teachers must embrace in a strong way those fundamental principles learnt during their period of training. He told the graduands that as they move into the school system to remember that passion and purpose are fuel for energized development.
“I say to you never lose focus of your passion and purpose, for a man without them will be like a ship without a sail, a ship without a destination. Remember the future of the nation’s children is in your hands. Believe in yourself and never be afraid to explore new approaches to teaching and learning,” he expressed.