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Creating Pathways for Educational Progress

For Release Upon Receipt - Thursday, January 10, 2019

_DSC7244ED-1-10-2019.jpgThe School of Education at Cave Hill is creating several initiatives aimed at changing the face of teacher education in the Caribbean. Among these are the implementation of new degree programmes and other courses for continuing education, the franchising of existing ones to national colleges in the OECS, and partnering with funding institutions, educational bodies and international and regional nongovernmental organisations to conduct research on student learning and achievement.

Professor Joel Warrican, Director of the School of Education at The UWI Cave Hill, outlined the projects being undertaken by the department on the opening day of the annual meeting for the Joint Board of Teacher Education (JBTE) for the Eastern Caribbean.

As it relates to improving access to quality tertiary-level degrees in education, Warrican told the meeting on Tuesday that the School is working on short courses to encourage continuous professional development.

“…. There are many teachers after they have been trained [who do not pursue] sufficient professional development. We have to ensure that our teachers are upgraded to meet the times. It is a changing world, so we have to make sure we have short courses for [educational practitioners] to access.”

Plans are also in the works for a Doctorate in Education (EdD) which would be of shorter duration than a PhD, as well as a degree in Special Education, which was specifically requested by ministries and chief education officers in the region.

Help is also coming for those who deliver early childhood education, the director said. “Many of the practitioners in early childhood don’t have the necessary qualifications to apply for university. So what we are doing is designing a matriculation pathway … for them to gain the certificate in Early Childhood Education, the Associate Degree and then the Bachelors.”

Access to the university and a sound tertiary-level instruction in education is also being created through partnerships with national colleges to offer the Masters in Education in the region as well as the franchising of the Bachelor and Diploma of Education.

Acknowledging the travel challenges that could be faced by people with family, job and other commitments, Warrican assured that the School would guarantee the quality of the programme offered in off-campus sites matched that offered at Cave Hill itself. He therefore encouraged colleges across the region to take up the franchise opportunity.

Warrican stressed that while developing degree programmes and other courses, it was important to be mindful of emerging issues, such as sustainability, resilience, diversity and varying levels of student abilities.

PICTURED: Professor Joel Warrican, Director of the School of Education


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