NCERD launches Online Continuous Professional Development programme for all teachers

The National Centre for Educational Resource Development (NCERD) launched its Online Continuous Professional Development (CPD) Programme.

The Director of NCERD, Ms. Quenita Walrond-Lewis said today during the virtual launch that the CPD will give teachers at every level, nursery, primary and secondary, the experience to lean on their autonomy and consider their professional practice. She said that professional development for teachers is necessary. “It means that you are continually giving yourself opportunities to improve your practice over time. Anyone and everyone regardless of your experience in the education system, whether you’ve just joined the profession or you’ve been in the profession for 30 years can benefit from continuous professional development,” Ms. Walrond-Lewis noted.

Director of NCERD, Ms. Quenita Walrond-Lewis

According to the Director, the team at NCERD underwent six months of intense training and preparation to be able to bring the courses to teachers. She said that the team had to undergo training in learning design and instructional design.

She said that the instructors had to learn how to technically operate within the Moodle space as well as think about the end user, and teachers, and how they could design course offerings that are engaging and interactive. The Director said that the programme is very flexible, teachers can learn at their own pace whether it is after work or on the weekend.

Chief Education Officer, Mr. Saddam Hussain

Chief Education Officer, Mr. Saddam Hussain said that the start of the CPD is a historical moment in the Education System in Guyana. He expressed his elation at the CPD coming on stream. He said that the Ministry will be partnering with the Guyana Teachers’ Union (GTU) so that the CPD can benefit every teacher.

According to Mr. Hussain, in the new week, the Education Systems Committee will meet and decide on several matters as it relates to the CPD. He said that the Ministry hopes to connect the CPD to the senior promotion system, the issuance of permanent certificates from CPCE and to use the CPD as a pathway for crediting the master teacher process.

Screenshots of today’s virtual launch of NCERD’s Online CPD

Further, the CEO urged all mathematics teachers at the secondary level to enroll in the Secondary Teachers of Math Upgrading Programme on the CPD platform. He said that teachers should complete this course by May of this year. Mr. Hussain congratulated the Director of NCERD and the team who were involved in the development of the programme.

Meanwhile, the Secretary-General of UNESCO Office – Guyana, Dr. Olato Sam said that today’s launch is worthy of celebration and widespread recognition. He said, “We embrace the idea that teachers upon exiting CPCE and completing their initial training are not trained for life. And so, continuous professional development provides the wherewithal for them to expand their scope, on their skills, and recognize and incorporate more contemporary ideas, concepts, and approaches to their pedagogy and development as educators.”

Secretary-General of UNESCO Office – Guyana, Dr. Olato Sam

Deputy General-Secretary of the GTU, Mr. Heathcliff Peters encouraged teachers to take advantage of the opportunities provided by NCERD. He said that the GTU intends to promote the CPD and encourage all teachers to enroll in the CPD to upgrade themselves through the online platform.

The Design Consultant on the CPD, Dr. Schontal Moore said that she was able to help the team at NCERD develop, design and deliver courses. She said this process took six months of continuous work in a purely online environment addressing how to convert a course from a face-to-face modality to be delivered online.

Design Consultant on the CPD, Dr. Schontal Moore

She said that each officer had to analyze their course in terms of how to convert the materials for effective online delivery before they began the design and development of the actual online course. She said that at the end of the six months, 24 courses were developed.

According to Dr. Moore, there might not be many such programs in the Caribbean region and this accomplishment should be promoted and highly commended as a progressive and forward-reaching step for NCERD and Guyana.

Screenshots of today’s virtual launch of NCERD’s Online CPD