MOU signed with OCW for Teacher Training on Saba and Statia

November 9, 2022

On Friday, November 4, the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science (OCW), the University of St. Martin (USM), and the University of the Virgin Islands (UVI) signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the Teacher Training Program in Saba and Sint Eustatius.
The Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education (BAE) program prepares students for the profession of primary education teaching and is offered by USM in cooperation with UVI. USM has been commissioned by the Ministry of Education, Culture & Science (OCW) to offer the program to teaching assistants on Saba and St. Eustatius. With this, OCW is meeting the need for locally trained teachers for primary education on the islands. The assignment stems from the “Cooperation Protocol to promote teacher training in the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands 2019-2025.” This protocol was signed in 2019 during the Four Countries Consultation by the four ministers of education of St. Maarten, Aruba, Curaçao and the Netherlands.

With a predominantly English-speaking population, Saba and Sint Eustatius need teacher training in the English language, which USM has been providing for more than 20 years. To add, USM has designed and offered locally relevant courses such as the History and Culture of Saint Martin, a required course for all local university students. Together with the school boards and local experts of Saba and Sint Eustatius, USM faculty members will develop a course on the history and culture of each island. Fourteen teaching assistants are registered to start in the program in January 2023.

Following the 2019 protocol, USM, along with other universities in the region, participated actively in the set-up of Kibrahacha, the partnership for Training & Professionalization Together in Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao.

Local partners expect that the Memorandum of Understanding signed Friday will strengthen Kingdom relations and bring educational institutions and school boards closer together in thinking about 21st-century education in the Caribbean.


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