–as World Teachers’ Day is observed
“YOUR value is not lost on us. Your value is not lost on this nation,” were the words of Education Minister, Priya Manickchand, as she addressed teachers and headteachers during a luncheon held in their honour on Tuesday.
The activity was hosted by the ministry in observance of World Teachers’ Day, and saw the attendance of teachers and headteachers from various levels of the school system. Minister Manickchand reminded the educators that their value to the nation will never go unnoticed.
“I believe strongly the nation knows your commitment and knows how special teachers are,” the minister told gathering.
She said that that if ever the value of teachers was in doubt, the last year and a half proved that they [teachers] possess a special skill and have been able to master the art of educating the nation’s children.
“Teaching is a calling; a calling that you have responded to and an art that you have developed over the years,” Manickchand remarked.
She said: “This value is not lost on us. I want you to understand that at the level of the ministry, that we understand your value. We know in the Ministry how valuable you are.”
She said that together, teachers and the Education Ministry have a duty to take the standard of education in Guyana higher and higher each year, so that better and better results could be achieved.
The Education Minister said that she is pleased that such a day is set aside to honour teachers, expressing hope that teachers across the country would use the day to reflect on how important they are to every child.
Manickchand reminded that teachers could make a difference between children living a life of comfort or continue to live in poverty as an adult.
Additionally, the minister said that teachers will see improved relations from the ministry. She said that this will not be achieved with a “big stick” approach, but rather one where guidance is given to improve standards and levels of engagement.
Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson, told teachers that they are valued not only as professionals, but as persons who help to make positive differences in the lives of children.
During his remarks, Dr. Hutson recalled how teachers have even made a difference in his life by encouraging him to work towards achieving a better life than that which he was exposed to as a youth.
He said that every child is born gifted and that teachers have the responsibility to nurture those gifts and help children achieve their full potential.
During Tuesday’s luncheon, Ms. Francesca Vieira was also honoured for giving 50 years of service to the education sector.
Also, teachers Ms. Malkia Payne of The Bishops’ High School and Ms. Candida Williams of Queen’s College were also honoured for writing the Portuguese Curriculum which began in April 2013. They trained teachers and prepared material to teach the subject in schools.
According to Minister Manickchand, it is because of the work of those teachers that the Caribbean Examinations Council is now offering Portuguese at the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations across the region.
The subject was first written in 2017 with Guyana obtaining an 89 per cent pass rate. She said that this is a representation of what persons are capable of when given the platform to deliver.