Signing on to the Regional Caribbean Safe School Initiative. From left are: Minister of State from the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information Jamaica Alando Terrelonge; Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Sint Maarten Wycliffe Smith; Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports, Curaçao Marilyn Alcala-Wallé; Head of the Bureau Primary Education in representation of Minister of Education, Science and Culture, Suriname Dr. Lydia Hewitt-Austin (Photo via CDEMA).
PHILIPSBURG–St. Maarten is one of five countries that signed to adhere to the Caribbean Safe School Initiative, and adopted the Antigua and Barbuda Declaration on School Safety during the 2nd Caribbean Safe School Ministerial Forum, held in Kingston from April 29 to April 30.
The forum was hosted by St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ Ministry of Education, National Reconciliation, Ecclesiastical Affairs and Information. The signing was reported on in CARICOM Today. According to the online publication, also signing were Curaçao, Grenada, Jamaica, Sint Maarten and Suriname.
In 2017, 12 countries adhered to the initiative and signed the Antigua and Barbuda Declaration on School Safety in the Caribbean. At the second Ministerial Forum, ten ministers of education, officials in the education sector as well as disaster management stakeholders, regional and international partners participated in technical discussions on school safety and updated the Regional RoadMap for School Safety.
The Minister of Education, National Reconciliation and Information of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines St. Clair Prince, commented in regard to the Caribbean Safe School Initiative that “the second Ministerial Forum has served to renew the commitment to build the resilience of the education sector in the Caribbean region.” He also added, “I am also committed as the incoming chair for this forum to ensure that School Safety in the Caribbean remains a priority nationally, regionally and internationally.”