Ministry of Education, Guyana

Monday, 21 May 2018 08:23

A school is as strong as the parental support it receives- National PTA Coordinator tells Bartica residents

The importance of parental involvement in children’s education was last Thursday emphasized when the Ministry of Education (MoE) held a townhall meeting at the Bartica Secondary School in Region Seven, Cuyuni-Mazaruni.

The parents of the town dubbed the gateway to the interior, came in numbers and attentively absorb as National Parents Teachers Association Coordinator Ms Nadia Hollingsworth implored them to play a more active role in their children’s education. The Coordinator said she was not at all suggesting that it is all parents who are ‘not stepping up adequately to the plate’. But rather the former Queens College Deputy Headmistress said some parents can do much more.

She said it is for those observations that through her department the MoE has come to the region to lend support and guidance to foster greater collaboration between the parents, the school and the MoE. “We at the Ministry recognize that no one group can do this alone”. Further Ms. Hollingsworth quipped that she is certain that if the three parties (MoE, the school and parents) in the process (Education) work collaboratively more can be 20180522

“We are all in this together, it is not we and them, it is us; without parents there would have been no children to teach”. The former teacher said the school is as strong as the parental support it receives and, in this regard, she reminded those gathered to understand their responsibilities and be receptive to sharing them.

The coordinator noted that she was not ‘having a go at parents’, however it is important that all concerned be candid about the current state of affairs. “Do not allow your children to be the victims of your circumstances, not because you are not familiar with a particular subject matter the child presents to you means you cannot assist”.

Ms Hollingsworth encouraged parent to approach the schools for assistance so that they can in turn assist the child at home. It is in this context that she advised teachers to facilitate this process and implore them to foster good relationship with 20180522 1

“Teachers look pass the issues and help that child to succeed”. Hollingsworth believes teachers should endeavour to be different and go the extra mile to assist the nation’s youths.
Added to that she said that it is fallacious to believe that good performing children only come from ‘top rated’ schools. Rather, she has seen children from other schools performing outstanding and it is parental involvement which is a vital ingredient for a successful outcome.

Also addressing the meeting was Assistant Regional Executive Officer for region seven Ms Stephie Allen. Ms. Allen said parents should not allow their children to merely sail along at school, “engage them to know what is going on at school”. The assistant REXO said there is much to be achieved should all parents adopt a more robust approach towards their children’s 20180522 3

Ms. Ena Hernades a parent said many times it’s only the teacher and the child. She charged some parents ‘to stand up and be counted’. On the other hand, the parent was in praise for those parents who she surmise as going the extra mile to assist their children and their school.

Tirani Gahill a teacher in her contribution to the meeting said she is concerned about the smartphones some children carry. Gahill said they are becoming a hindrance to the learning process. Towards this end she called on parents to better supervise the use of these devices.

For the past months the MoE has been holding townhall meetings across the 11 education districts explaining the importance of parental involvement in education and the critical role parents are expected to play in this initiative.


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