–President Ali announces at commissioning of newly constructed multimillion-dollar Abram Zuil Secondary School
–Education Minister recommits to ensuring that all schools are equipped to deliver ‘high quality’ education
PRESIDENT, Dr. Irfaan Ali, on Thursday, announced that more funds will be injected into the education sector to enhance more institutions and make room for more advancements in this area.
The President revealed the government’s plan during a commission ceremony for the newly constructed state-of-the-art multimillion-dollar Abram Zuil Secondary School, in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam).
In his featured address to the gathering at the ceremony, President Ali said that his government considered a “very important” presentation during their recent Cabinet meeting; this included a review of the condition survey that was done in every facility that is related to education across the country, such as dorms, teachers living quarters, hostels, nursery, primary and secondary schools.
“Outside of the massive investments that we are already making in new facilities and the rehabilitation of existing facilities, it is estimated that to bring all of the facilities throughout Guyana, in every single region, to minimum standards, retrofitting, maintenance, and renovation projects will be at a cost of 11 billion Guyana dollars for education alone.
“We considered this conditional survey and this assessment, and we have decided that notwithstanding the tremendous resources that we already have in the budget this year, we are going to go for supplementary provisions so that we can start an acceleration of this $ 11 billion dollars investment,” Dr. Ali said.
The President also related that they have decided that they will separate the investment in a multi-year/multi-programme agenda for education, so that they can accelerate the investments and get the facilities to the required standards.
The Abram Zuil Secondary School was constructed at a cost of $585 million by Builders Hardware and General Supplies, and has the capacity to house over 750 students (Delano Williams photo)
An important part of this initiative is the fulfillment of a promise that teachers, wherever they are accommodated, they are given comfortable and decent accommodation.
Already impressed by the work delivered at Abram Zuil, the President said the physical structure of the secondary school will be ranked in the top 10 per cent of all the schools around the world.
He added that he is pleased with what he has seen and that goes to show that they are continuing to invest and deliver in the best interest of the people of Guyana.
Minister of Education, Priya Manickchand said this school is just a symbol of love and compassion that the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) government has for Guyana’s children.
“When we say that we love children and when we say that we love you it must have meaning, you should look for that meaning and remember that words mean nothing by themselves. We brought back the cash grants and fed all the grade six pupils,” she said.
Minister Manickchand related that even though Abram Zuil Secondary School was physically in a bad state, they were still performing well, academically.
The Education Minister also commended the school for having the highest matriculation rate in Region Two.
Minister Manickchand said: “Abram Zuil and Anna Regina Multilateral have shown us, and I suspect that they will show us again this year, that if you stay in these regions, you can do well…these children have shown us that as long as we invest in them, show them the same love, and give them the same attention and resources, they will stay in their regions and do well.”
She also said that the Government of Guyana and her ministry’s aim is to ensure that every school in Guyana, regardless of its location, is equipped to deliver a “high quality” of education through proper facilities and learning materials.
Minister Manickchand said the Essequibo Coast has “unique opportunities” for its people, and it has been able to produce for Guyana, persons who have positions in almost every field throughout the country.
Considering this, she implored every schoolchild to make use of the opportunities that they are being given right now in their respective schools.
The Abram Zuil Secondary School was constructed at a cost of $585 million by Builders Hardware and General Supplies, and has the capacity to house over 750 students.
The massive facility is equipped with 27 modern classrooms, three laboratories, and one smart classroom that is equipped with all the necessary learning materials.
The facility also has an auditorium and modern restrooms. The teachers and students are expected to occupy their new school in September of this year.