Higher education, BHS, excellence centers – some of the Labour Party’s education initiatives

Two of their new candidates for the 16th February general elections, have given their views on what policies they would be bringing to better the education system in St. Kitts and Nevis. 

Konris Maynard, the Labour Party’s representative in constituency #3, explained to MiyVue.com that he hopes to institute an after school homework system and also to develop excellence centers around the Federation to ably assist young individuals who have specialized skills in trade and other technical fields.

“Things with respect to education that I would hope to see in my constituency of #3 is an after school homework assistance programme. Where there can be centers developed, using persons from the community, whether retired or willing to give their time, so there will be various afternoon activities in different communities,” said Maynard.

Further, he suggested that these programmes would not only assist students with their homework, but they would develop their character as well.

“I think that would be very important. When I was younger we had a number of groups you could have gone to whether it was the Boy Brigade or whether it was a sports club, etc., you were also properly trained in terms of getting a good character and good personable skills to deal with situations and the public etc.,” he said, adding that “Another aspect of education I want to support the ministry with is the development of centers of excellence. We have to move away from just the traditional teaching of academia in the schools and realize that there are going to have other areas where people are going to be specialists in. Some are going to be trade specialist,” he explained.

Speaking on the controversial situation affecting the Basseterre High School, Maynard said that he hopes that ‘level heads’ would prevail in that situation because the health of students and teachers is a top priority.

“First and foremost, we have to ensure that the health of everyone is safeguarded, whether it is the student’s or the teacher’s. We must do everything in our power to ensure that, that is the case.

“In terms of controversy, all we are concerned with is finding a solution, and we are willing to work with whatever solution makes sense. It must not be because of one’s political affiliation. It must not be because of one’s feeling or emotional attachments to something. It must be something that will solve whatever problem has been identified, and we just need a level-headed approach,” Maynard remarked.

He suggested that after the upcoming general elections more emphasis would be placed on the situation.

“I believe that when we move pass this elections, the solution will be very easy, cool heads will prevail, and we will get the Basseterre High School back up and running in tip-to-shape,” Maynard said.              

Meanwhile, the party’s candidate in constituency #8, Dr. Terrence Drew, will be focusing his attention on higher education for youths of St Kitts and Nevis.

Speaking on the political platform recently, Dr. Drew explained that no country can progress without higher education, noting that if there were any government or movement that understands that higher education is important for the development of the people, it would be the St. Kitts and Nevis Labour Party.

“Right here in St. Peter’s is a prime example of that. Before Labour, how many people in St. Peter’s had the opportunity to go away and study?  How many people in Stapleton went away and study? How many people in Upper Monkey Hill went away and study,” Drew asked.

He noted that there were “hardly” any graduates from the St. Peter’s area.

However, in the post 1995 era, Drew said there were numerous graduates coming out of the St. Peter’s district after his party, the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party, took office.

Dr. Terrence Drew is one of several individuals who were awarded scholarships to pursue medical studies overseas.

“Labour has been good in the area of higher education for the people of St. Peter’s and the people throughout this country,” Drew posited.

I want you to understand young people, that if you have dreamed and you think about becoming anything good, you need a good government. If you think about being anything wholesome, you need a good movement,” said Drew.

However, the first-time candidate stated the change that the opposition is speaking about is not the same as the ones that he and his team will be bringing to the people, should they be elected to run the country again.

Dr. Drew would be competing against the incumbent representative from the People’s Action Movement, Eugene Hamilton, while Konris Maynard is challenging the incumbent and former Labour Party member, Sam Condor.

[Editor’s note: Starting 1st March 2015, MiyVue.com would become MyVueNews.com]

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