On Monday the World Bank’s board of executive directors approved loan financing of US$13.5 million to support the ongoing Guyana Secondary Education Improvement Project.
“Guyana’s education sector has made significant progress in the last decade; however, strengthening learning outcomes remains a priority and the pandemic is hitting the education sector hard,” World Bank Resident Representative for Jamaica and Guyana Ozan Sevimli explained.
The project aims to improve teaching in mathematics and increase enrollment in secondary schools by provide equipment and training to support innovative technology-assisted education delivery methods. However, the World Bank will allocate this additional financing for the completion of two secondary schools, supply resources for those schools, and build a new secondary school.
Located in Regions 3 and 4, the schools serve nearly 30 per cent of the country’s secondary school population and over 40 per cent of those living in poverty. With this kind of access to high-quality secondary education, the Government can reduce overcrowding, improve learning conditions, and contribute to increasing enrolment.
“Through the ongoing project, we are pleased to support the Government in piloting use of technology and innovative ways of teaching, which are particularly relevant during distance learning. The new financing will support the pilot of a ‘smart classroom’ initiative to help the sector build back better from the pandemic,” Sevimli further outlined.
The disbursement will also facilitate the procurement of more resources to an existing pilot programme that uses adaptive learning software on tablets for a higher-quality mathematics education, thus preparing Guyanese students for future employment.
As part of the programme, capacity building for teachers will play an important role in improving the quality of secondary education.
With its genesis in 2014, the Guyana Secondary Education Project will extend to 2023 to ensure the successful completion of all the activities. So far, the project has yielded mathematics standards for secondary school teachers, supported mathematics training for over 600 teachers, and distributed 200 mathematics teaching kits.