Database launched to help with students’ welfare

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, June 20, 2018

The Ministry of Education Schools Welfare Unit today officially launched its welfare database system aimed at tracking and helping students with social and psychosocial problems.

At the event, Chief Education Officer, Marcel Hutson said, “transformation could never take place if wise decisions are not made and therefore we must have that mindset where we’re willing to change the old ways of doing things. As a Ministry of Education, if we’re going to be relevant if we’re going to be effective, we must use data.”

Referencing the recent National Policy for the Reintegration of Adolescent Mothers into the Formal School System, Hutson said that data was used for its formulation and this new database must be used for the same.

“The database must now be used to implement more strategies for welfare issues. Gathering data that’s one thing, how you use the data in terms of implementation that’s another because you could have information about children who need help, who need support, but we do not apply what we know, and therefore we must go beyond just gathering and having the base.”

In her remarks, Chief Schools Welfare Officer, Glenna Vyphius said that the idea of creating an electronic database was birthed at a UNICEF sponsored retreat for welfare and guidance counselling officers under the theme, “Revisiting strategies, recommitting ourselves to reaching all school children”.  “This database will create a management system which will improve communication between the Schools Welfare Unit and regional offices and schools, strategize forms, data collection and report, improve data analysis, and serve as a modular system to cater for information sharing between departments and agencies.”

The database also aims to digitize forms, automate report generation, create issue tracking, record keeping, create a secure application, and offer maintenance and support. The database will also assist with fulfilling the Schools Welfare Service Unit’s aims to identify and assist children with social and psychosocial problems which impact on their performance at school.

By: Stephon Gabriel.

Images: Keno George.