MOE conducts counselling session at Mae’s Secondary school

DPI, Guyana, Friday, January 25, 2019

Students of Mae’s Secondary School underwent a special counselling exercise, on Friday morning, undertaken by the Ministry of Education, following the recent tragic death of a student of the school.

Those in attendance during the counselling session included guidance and counselling officers, along with the Minister of Education Dr. Nicolette Henry, Chief Education Officer Marcel Hutson and Chief School Welfare Officer.

During the visit to the private education institution, Minister Henry and her team met with, listened and offered support to the administration and students. She told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that her ministry plans to address this issue in a holistic way.

“Based on all we have heard so far, they are a lot of social issues that ought to be addressed. I believe what we saw there is a symptom of a larger problem, at the level of the Ministry of Education we have undertaken several initiatives under the broad umbrella of the school health programme and therefore I would want to see stronger collaboration with the public and private education system,” she explained.

The Minister expressed her concern for the safety, health and delivery of education to every child across the country and assured that her ministry will assist in every way possible. She also urged students to consult with the relevant officials attached to their school concerning the loss of their colleague.

Chief Education Officer (CEO) Marcel Hutson said, “We at the Ministry of Education also feel this loss because at the end of the day at a ministry we are responsible for the school system and those children within the walls of various schools. It is quite sad that something of this nature would have happened…we feel that it is important to come here and address our students.” He also expressed his condolences to the deceased’s family and friends for their loss.

As part of the ministry’s effort to transport welfare officers to areas in which persons are in need of counselling, the mobile psychosocial unit was present at the school to help the students.

Launched in 2018, this unit aims to help to reduce stress levels and provide a quick response to trauma. The Unit is fully equipped with a refrigerator, stove, air condition, bathroom and other facilities to benefit the officials who will be travelling to hinterland areas, among others, to provide counselling.

On Thursday, it is alleged that the 6th form student died on the way to a private medical facility after vomiting profusely in the classroom.

A visit was also made to the home of the deceased to provide support and other intervention for the family members.

Neola Damon.

Images: Keno George.


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