Jan 29, 2022 News
– plans to train 1,000 for Oil and Gas sector
Kaieteur News – With a promise of delivering a modern and adaptive learning experience for all in Guyana, the Government this year plans to spend a sum of $74.4 billion out of its $552.9 billion budget for 2022, towards improving the country’s education sector.
The disclosure was made by Senior Minister in the Office of the President with the responsibility for Finance, Dr. Ashni Singh, who presented the National Budget for 2022 in the National Assembly on Wednesday.
According to him, in keeping with the President’s vision of a world-class education for citizens, the government this year anticipates to reform the curriculum, expand teacher training, construct new schools, and establish robust systems to take advantage of the finite window of opportunity to educate each generation.
Out of the budgeted amount for the sector, Dr. Singh revealed that a sum of $6.6 billion has been dedicated towards the construction, rehabilitation, extension, and maintenance of educational facilities.
This would see the commencement of the construction of the Prospect Secondary School, and the reconstruction of North Ruimveldt and North West Secondary Schools, which were destroyed by fires last year.
Further, the money will go towards the construction of nursery schools at Hydronie, Haslington and Vryheid Lust and primary schools at Bamia, Amelia’s Ward, Kaikan, Karabairu, Zeelugt and Oronoque.
He told the Assembly, the Kato and the Linden Technical Institute dormitories will be completed in addition to a number of schools and educational facilities that will be rehabilitated and maintained in 2022.
Meanwhile, in addressing the nutritional intake of the children and improving attentiveness, the government this year plans to expand the national school feeding programme.
To this end, he said, in the education budget, a sum of $2 billion has been allocated to implement this initiative which will benefit a total of 85,773 pupils.
According to Dr. Singh, “the pandemic has reinforced the need to accelerate comprehensive digitalisation of the sector, and in response we will be equipping 300 primary school teachers and 125 secondary school teachers with laptops and computing devices.”
With this in mind, he shared that a total of 11,000 tablets and flash drives, loaded with teaching materials will be provided to students at these levels while the number of smart classrooms will be expanded.
This initiative, he mentioned is budgeted at a cost of $295.7 million.
In addition to learning materials, a sum of $1.2 billion is earmarked to procure textbooks while over $20 million is budgeted to purchase 2,000 micro-science kits for an additional 100 primary schools which will allow for 100 percent primary coverage, for the first time.
As it relates to reforming teacher’s training, it was revealed that approximately $200 million is allocated to provide financial support to trainee teachers at the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE).
Notably, a sum of $3.5 billion was also allocated to the University of Guyana for the operation of its campuses and expansion of its course offerings for online and in-person classes.
Dr. Singh announced too that the government intends to continue the GOAL scholarship programme and has plugged $1.3 billion to meet the cost of another 4,500 scholarships as well as 2,726 continuing students.
This year, the government will be partnering with the private sector to establish a Guyana Technical Training College with a campus at Port Mourant which will incorporate the renowned GuySuCo Port Mourant Training School, he further explained. With this coming on stream, it will add new training facilities for oil and gas as well as for the tourism and hospitality sector.
An initial $260 million is budgeted to commence works at this location in 2022, the Minister presented.
According to Dr. Singh, “in order to ensure that we have a pool of Guyanese persons equipped to take up jobs in the oil and gas industry, Budget 2022 allocates $420.5 million to train 1,000 workers in a wide range of areas relevant to the sector. This programme will continue into the medium-term and will see up to 4,500 persons trained over the next four years.”
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