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BARBADOSBARBADOS Early Childhood Education in the context of Equity and Quality preventing School Dropout.

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Presentation on theme: "BARBADOSBARBADOS Early Childhood Education in the context of Equity and Quality preventing School Dropout."— Presentation transcript:

1 BARBADOSBARBADOS Early Childhood Education in the context of Equity and Quality preventing School Dropout

2 BARBADOS The most easterly Island of the Caribbean Approximately 166 square miles Population: approx. 260,000 Composition: predominantly negro Language: English

3 EDUCATION SYSTEM British tiered system: Pre-primary (3-5), Primary (5-11), Secondary & Tertiary Motto: Each one matters, quality education for all Education high priority for government – the second largest chunk of the budget goes toward education

4 ECE STATISTICS Annual Enrolment (2002/2003): 4,732 children at government Pre-primary (3-4 years old), schools and 529 at private pre- primary Schools 78 government schools and 18 private schools that cater for this age group 1565 Total number of teachers interacting with children in the 3-7 age range in government schools, of these 341 are males and 1224 are females.

5 CURRENT PROGRAMMES Ministry of Education Pre-primary Education: Four traditional nursery schools designed to cater strictly for the needs of the 3-4 age group (Shift system, 4 Nursery Assistants) 63 Nursery Units – department of a public primary school. Parent Volunteer Support Programme to facilitate the needs of the 3- yearv-old in the Nursery Unit (1996). One remaining Infant School. Provision for children with Special Needs Education Sector Enhancement Programme

6 CURRENT PROGRAMMES Ministry of Social Transformation CHILD CARE BOARD: Birth to three Public Day Care Centres - 15 Private Day Care Centres – 64 registered (1998)

7 ECE ASSOCIATIONS Early Childhood Education Association of Barbados Inc. (ECEAB), non-governmental, a body of ECE educators who promote & advocate developmentally appropriate practice in ECE Parents Teachers Associations Parents Staff Associations Private Day Care Operators Association

8 POLICIES 1960 – first public nursery school (3-5) 1987 – 3s into nursery departments Registration (3/more children not your own) Private educational institutions Ratios of adults to children – Birth – 2 = 1:6, 2- 4=1:12, 3-5=1:15 & 5-7=1:25 Space, furniture & Equipment Immunisation from birth to 16 Entrance must be verified by birth & medical certificates Length of school day & term Inclusion of children with Special Needs

9 STRATEGIES Provide free school meals to all Primary aged to ensure that the nutrition needs are met School uniforms – eliminates socio- economic differences Public nursery schools on a shift basis 9-12 and 1-3 p.m. Registration of Private institutions ensures quality provision & adherence to the National Curriculum

10 STRATEGIES Free primary Health Care – provision of hearing aids, glasses, etc. Support services for children in need, e.g. counselling, bus fares, uniforms, etc. Student Services: Counsellor, Psychologists, Social Worker, etc.

11 Experiences in ECE Education Sector Enhancement Programme Curriculum reform Attainment targets & revised curriculum Student-centred Constructivist based learning Thematic approach -Integration Socio-emotional learning skills Oral competence & Standard English

12 CHALLENEGS Need to improve quality of ECE provision Shortage of expertise in ECE training teachers Lack of financial resources

13 Thank You


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