Federal Education Administrators Launch Safe School Initiative

Basseterre: St. Kitts: Education officials from St. Kitts and Nevis convened on Thursday, February 15 at the Caribbean Confederation of Credit Union (CUNA) Conference Room to set in motion the National Safe School Policy.

“School administrators and teachers who play a critical role in shaping young minds deserve a workplace where they can concentrate on their responsibilities without worrying about their safety. Support staff, whose contributions often go unnoticed deserve an environment where they can execute their duties without fear or hindrance.

Most importantly, all our students, the future leaders and inventors deserve a space where they can learn and flourish without threat,” verbalized Mr. Francil Morris Chief Education Officer in prefatory remarks.

Providing a synopsis of the Safe School Initiative, Mrs. Tamicia Lestrade, Project Development Officer, Ministry of Education Nevis communicated, “The Safe School Recognition Programme in St. Kitts and Nevis is a multifaceted initiative designed to bolster the safety and resilience of educational institutions across the islands.

Spearheaded by collaborative efforts, the program’s framework was established with the expertise of a consultant provided by The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA). Central to the program’s success is the meticulous selection of schools for participation. To ensure an equitable and representative selection process, schools are chosen based on criteria such as their location, the type of school (e.g., Early Childhood, Primary, Secondary), and their exposure and vulnerability to hazards.”

Minister of Education Hon. Dr. Geoffrey Hanley outlined the imperative of schools and reinforced the need for a safe school environment.He assured attendees “A safe and secure environment is a prerequisite for effective teaching and learning. The goal of the policy [National Safe School Policy] is to promote the well-being and academic success of students by mitigating issues of safety and security and providing resources and support for those who need it. I can assure you the Ministry of Education works continually to address safety and security concerns in schools through multiple actions. Building safe schools is not only a priority for our administrators, security personnel, and teachers but must also be a priority for our architects, engineers, policy makers, administrators, and emergency response planners.”

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