SVGTU holds symposium
July 3, 2009
SVGTU holds symposium

In conjunction with Education International, the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Teachers’ Union held a two-day symposium on violence and other deviant and anti-social behaviours in the Education system on Monday and Tuesday, June 22 – 23, at the Methodist Church Hall.{{more}}

Acting President of the SVGTU Sheldon Govia, in brief remarks, expressed that the symposium was held “in an effort to stem this growing trend of ill discipline in our schools…” He continued: “The main aim of this symposium is to devise a national strategy and an action plan…”

Govia implored all stakeholders within the education system to recognise the significance of their roles and to contribute accordingly. He pointed out that the SVGTU and the Primary Schools Headteachers’ Council had developed a document (titled ‘Response to Draft Discipline Policy’) on November 24, 2004, which appears to have been “disregarded by the Ministry of Education.” He further explained: “the objectives of this symposium… will be discussed with the Ministry of Education for implementation. This is a grave situation and the Ministry of Education is expected to be on board.”

Remarks were also given by Chairperson of the Gender Committee in the SVGTU James Wilson. James highlighted that there is “an urgent need” to have this issue addressed and rectified. “It poses a serious challenge not only to the school system, but to Vincentian society on a whole.”

On day 1 of the symposium, Maureen Browne-Arindell, Frank Jones, Philbert John and Anesia Baptiste made presentations. Cammie Matthews, Genita Lewis, Wendel Parris and Renando Henderson hosted a panel discussion.

The topics included: Understanding the Nature, Causes and Consequences of Violence, Deviance and other forms of Anti-social Behaviours among Adolescents; Manifestations of Ill Discipline in the School System; The Roles of Government and Non-governmental Agencies in Reducing Violence, Deviance and other forms of Anti-social Behaviours among Adolescents; and Societal and other Factors that contribute to Anti-social Behaviour among Adolescents.

On day 2 of the symposium, presentation topics included: The Role of the SVGTU; Curriculum Reform and its Implications for Student Attitude and Conduct; Towards a Code of Conduct for Schools in SVG; and Strategies for Promoting Safe and Effective Schools in SVG.

The topic for the panel discussion was “Is the Media a help or a hindrance in promoting desirable behaviours among adolescents?”(JSV)