MoE receives almost 2000 face shields from UNICEF
(21st July 2020)- As the Ministry of Education (MoE) plans for the opening of schools, today, a welcomed donation was received from the United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Guyana.
The items amounted to 1,944 face shields that were handed over to the MoE’s Permanent Secretary Mr Alfred King. The gesture forms part of the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) project to which the Education Ministry is apart and in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. The face shields are the first of an expressed plan for a total of 35,000 pieces including masks and other protective gears to be handed over to support measures to treat with the COVID-19 pandemic. The handing over was done during a simple ceremony in the Ministry’s lot 26 Brickdam Compound.
Proffering remarks, P.S King says he sees the donation as another effort to support continued learning in a safe and secured environment as the ministry works out plans for the eventual opening of schools.
It has been more than four months of operations in the COVID-19 environment and King expressed the Ministry’s gratitude for the support towards the safety of educators, students and other stakeholders.
Further P.S King, while iterating the proactive safety measures employed by the Ministry, noted that “We have to continue to be very careful to ensure a healthy and safe environment and these shields will assist greatly”.
The evidence of the resolve for continued engagement for National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) and the ongoing CSEC and CAPE was also noted. Speaking of the blended approach of all stakeholders that has taken effect, PS King commended educators for using their own resources to plan and prepare for the major examinations.
UNICEF Resident Representative Ms Sylvie Fouet noted the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the education sector. It is for this reason according to Ms Fouet that her organization saw the need to assist with the shields.
She said that the provision of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is a critical element for the return to a safe and protected environment for students when schools eventually open.
Additionally, Fouet said that the work the MoE has undertaken so far is commendable. She committed to working ‘side by side’ with the Education Ministry to make the opening of schools safe and a top priority.
UNICEF has been a developmental partner with the Ministry for many years and proposes to continue in the same vein assured the Resident Representative. Also in attendance was the MoE’s Chief Planning Officer (CPO) Ms Nicola Johnson, Director of NCERD Ms Jennifer Cumberbatch, Project Coordinator Ms Quenita Walrond-Lewis, Technical Officer to the PS Ms Karen Burchsmith, Unicef Deputy Resident Representative Mr Irfan Aktar and UNICEF’s Mr Robbie Rambarran.