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Saturday, 31 October 2020

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GIS News

MINISTRY OF EDUCATION TO BRING IN 100 STUDENTS FROM ABROAD

The Government of Dominica through the Ministry of Education, Human Resource Planning, Vocational Training and National Excellence has commenced the process of bringing students studying abroad back to Dominica aid the covid-19 pandemic.

Minister for Education, Human Resource Planning, Vocational Training and National Excellence, Honourable Octavia Alfred noted during a press briefing that her ministry that students will be arriving as early as June 9th 2020.

“The Ministry of Education, Human Resource Planning, Vocational Training and National Excellence is very happy to report that the Government of Dominica is ready to repatriate our students who expressed their desire to come home. The Ministry of education in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of National Security and the Prime Minister’s Office have worked tirelessly to bring our students home. The Government has secured two flights operated by Silver Airlines to take the first group of students in on Tuesday June 9th 2020. One flight will leave Fort Lauderdale with fifty students. Although the flight has a capacity of seventy, regulations require that only fifty can embark on this port. This flight will arrive in San Juan at 10:30 for refueling. There, another twenty students will embark to leave for Dominica. If all goes well this group of students will arrive home around midday,” Minister Alfred stated.

The education Minister went on to explain that one hundred students will arrive in the first instance. She noted that thee students will undergo mandatory medical screenings upon arrival before being transferred to a fourteen day quarantine.

“On that same day an additional group of thirty students will embark a second flight leaving San Juan at 1 p.m. This means that by the grace of God one hundred of our precious students will be home. Logistics for these two flights are in motion. Arrangements with airlines are complete. The list of students and other necessary information have been submitted to relevant authorities. Students have been informed. These students will be expected to follow the protocols which are in place for arrival in Dominica. They will be required to wear a mask and exercise hand hygiene and proper respiratory etiquette. They will be required to complete screening to include a covid-19 test and assessment by medical health authorities. They will serve a fourteen day quarantine in the Government facility at which they will be responsible for their essential hygiene and personal supplies during the quarantine period. They will be expected to adhere to the additional quarantine guidelines as advised by the health authorities,” she explained.

Minister Alfred further noted that students in other countries will be assisted after the mandatory quarantine period is over for the first group of students. 

“Groups of students from Canada, Barbados, Trinidad, China, the United Kingdom and other countries will be facilitated by the 24th of June. This is so because he quarantine period for the first group of students will end on June 23rd 2020 and adequate time is required for the facility to be thoroughly cleaned and prepared for the other group of students. Some of our students are on their final year of studies and will not be required to return. However, the Ministry of Education advise that students will be responsible for their return travel to their respective place of study for their new academic year,” Minister Alfred added.

 

Minister of Education commends teachers for their contribution to National Development

 

Minister for Education and Human Resource Development Honourable Petter Saint Jean has commended the island’s teachers for their contribution to national development.

Honourable Saint Jean was addressing a ceremony at the North East Comprehensive Secondary School last Friday to observe World Teachers Day under the theme “Young Teachers-The Future of the Profession”.

The Minister stated that the teachers are widely responsible for the development of the country’s youth into well rounded citizens, who can assist in the development of the country.

“Anybody who has worked as a teacher or a school administrator knows and understands that the role of a teacher is not limited merely to imparting knowledge to students. Teachers have always served as a source of knowledge, a source of strength and inspiration for students. In fact you motivate, inspire and journey alongside students to help them realize their dreams and their goals and fulfil those dreams. This I believe is the most important professional function within our society. A teacher’s place is indispensable in moulding of citizens who can make invaluable contributions to their country’s development,” Minister Saint Jean stated.   

The Education Minister encouraged teachers to take their responsibilities seriously particularly now in an ever changing global environment.

“Every day you have the opportunity to shape your students’ character, to develop and affect a positive perception of themselves, and to influence the direction that their lives will take, this is no small task. It is both a privilege and a responsibility and you must discharge it to the best of your ability. This responsibility now takes on even greater significance. The word is changing rapidly and both of our students and teachers will inevitably take on more prominent roles,” he noted.

Meantime, in keeping with the theme “Young Teachers, The Future of the Profession”, the Honourable Saint Jean announced that Government continues to take action geared at the advancement of the island’s teachers.

“At the start of the school year we took a deliberate decision to ensure that all untrained teachers were mandated to begin teacher certification at the Dominica State College. This of course falls under the Government’s policy of free tuition at the State College. While this is largely about ensuring that we provide quality teaching and learning in the Dominican classroom, it is also empowering you, the young teachers, who we expect will eventually lead our schools and the education system,” he went on to say.

He then encourage the teachers to take advantage of the opportunities that the Government of Dominica has afforded to them.

“I urge all of you therefore, who are part of this program to take full advantage of the opportunity to take personal and professional advancement,” Minister Saint Jean further added.

Parliament Approves Government’s EC$27 Million IDA Loan For Housing

A resolution for the authorisation of a credit facility from the International Development Association (ID) or World Bank for Dominica’s Housing Recovery Project was brought before Parliament and passed on Monday June 25, 2018.

Government has concluded negotiations with the World Bank for a financing facility in the amount of US$27,800,000 Special Drawing Rights (SDR) comprising of US$7 million IDA loans and US$20,800,000 in IDA grants.

The government of Dominica and the IDA have entered into an agreement whereby the government of Dominica will contract a credit facility in the sum of EC$27 million or US$7 million.

These funds will be used to assist Dominica in the recovery of housing for households affected by hurricane Maria and to improve the application of resilient practices in the housing sector.

The bill was tabled by the Hon Deputy Prime Minister, Reginald Austrie.

“Approximately 1700 eligible homeowners will be provided with a subsidy in the form EC$42,000 grant, that’s US$16,000,” Hon Austrie explained. He said further “design and supervision services for construction works for eligible beneficiaries and the establishment and operation of a project implementation unit and an implementation support team” will also be funded through this credit facility.

“This loan is consistent with the government of Dominica debt strategy and is being provided on very concessional terms,” he remarked.

These terms include an interest rate of ¾ of 1% per annum and a commitment charge of ½ of 1% per annum; repayment will be in fifty semi-annual instalments commencing August 15, 2028 (a grace period of ten years).

Hon Austrie says government was able to negotiate those terms based on its fiscal prudence.

Longevity in Dominica: Turning 100

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Mrs Gwendolyn Magloire affectionately known as “ma fehw” joined the ranks of Dominican Centenarians on Saturday October 20, as she celebrated her 100th birthday with the entire town of Portsmouth and guests from all over the region.

The Celebration took place at the Portsmouth Seventh Day Adventist Church, with songs of praise and thanksgiving for the long life of a member of the community. Mrs Magloire, born on October 04, 1918, appeared jovial and energetic during the ceremony, singing and clapping along to the hymns and choruses.

Speaking at the celebration, Parliamentary Representative Hon. Ian Douglas made a commitment to the family to take over the caretaker fees for Mrs Magloire from the church. “I want to commend the church for having continued to meet the stipend of her caretaker and I want to speak to those responsible so that the government can take that over. That is a responsibility that we want to help with." 

President of the Dominica Council on Ageing (DCOA) Gloria Shillingford, congratulated Mrs Magloire on her 100th birthday.  She announced that the council had already taken steps to provide cooking gas and electricity at no cost to her, as well as her stipend of $500 from Government. Shillingford went on to extend her gratitude to the SDA church for ensuring a suitable caretaker for Mrs. Magloire “I thank the church for really looking out for her, the community for looking out for her because if all of us open our eyes and our ears for the elderly."

President of the Commonwealth of Dominica His Excellency Charles Savarin, made a special presentation to the centenarian, “On behalf of the Government and the people of the commonwealth of Dominica, and on behalf of Mrs Savarin and myself, I wish to extend my congratulations and good wishes on the occasion of the celebration of your 100th birthday which you attained on Thursday, October 04, 2018. May the good lord continue to bless you.”

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Gwendolyn Philomen John Magloire was born to parents Philomen John and Mr. Harold Cadette as the eldest of seven children. She lived a life of charity, aiding struggling families in whatever way she could. She bore no biological children, however raised four. 

DSC Certifies 41 In General Studies Programmes

Forty-one nationals are now more knowledgeable in the fields of customer relationship management strategy; basic massage; professional development; introduction to management; introduction to financial accounting and introduction to sales and marketing.

On Monday, August 14th, the Dominica State College held an achievement certificate ceremony for students who completed these 12-week courses under the DSC’s general studies programme.

Registrar and Acting President of the DSC, Dr. Schuyler Esprit remarked that as Dominica’s national college the DSC has a mandate to give all Dominicans easier access to education.

She stated that the DSC believes that this can only be achieved by providing excellent academic programmes for students to build careers and by providing opportunities for life-long learning for any Dominican citizen who wants to improve their living.

Dr. Esprit commented that as the college’s newest department, general studies is already impressive in its curriculum development and in its outreach to traditional students, employers, and the wider community.

“The short courses are now offered under the DSC’s new division of general studies and have already become a national success and that is no small part thanks to you our pioneering students. We hope you have benefited from the learning experience as much as your facilitators and the coordinator have felt the reward of working closely with you for these modules.”

The Acting DSC President revealed that the DSC’s general studies programme offers its own associates degree in general studies and interdisciplinary programme for learners who want to enrich their education without specific training in a single field of study.

Upcoming courses include introduction to project management and business analysis; introduction to financial accounting; introduction to management and home care management among others. For a full list, you can visit www.facebook.com/dscregistrar.

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