Education should not be limited by age, time or place
Special Features
September 7, 2007

Education should not be limited by age, time or place


From the Desk of the Director

Greetings to the Adult Education fraternity here in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. This year may have not been as exciting for us as the two previous years. Through no fault of ours, we have been unable to deliver the programmes we had hoped to deliver, and to provide more learning opportunities for our clientele.{{more}}

The policies and programmes of the Department of Adult and Continuing Education are grounded in the philosophy of life long learning, and we subscribe to the philosophical tenets outlined in the Education Sector Development Plan 2002 – 2007, which states

“Education is a fundamental human right, and all citizens should be enabled to achieve a basic required minimum.

Education should not be limited by age, time and place, but should be a lifelong process which goes beyond normal school.

All forms of education, whatever the content, should be developed to meet the varying needs of the population.”

Our mission statement clearly reflects these undergirding philosophical tents. It states:

“To assist in the socioeconomic development of St. Vincent and the Grenadines by facilitating the education and training of all our citizens over the age of fifteen years who are outside of the formal system.”

Our potential clientele exceeds sixty thousand persons. All these persons are adults with a wide range of educational and training needs. The onus is on our Department to address these needs. Indeed we are committed to meeting these needs. However, we cannot do it alone. We must have the support of all stakeholders: the political directorate, the leadership of the Ministry of Education, other government Ministries and Departments, public sector entities, the private sector, church leaders and other non – government agencies. We are all in this together. Adult Education is about the development of the nation. This view is supported by Frederick H. Harbison in his book “Human Resources as the Wealth of Nations.” He states:

“Investment in learning develops the capability of the labour force to engage in evermore complicated, productive activity, which in turn increases the level of employment opportunity.”

For Harbison, as for us in Adult Education, “it is the development of human resources, not capital nor income nor material resources which constitutes the ultimate basis for the wealth of the nations.” Once we are provided with the means to put our plans and programmes in place, the Division intends to create a learning society in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Our programmes include the following:

  • Basic literacy programmes to continue the work started under the Literacy Crusade.
  • General academic upgrading.
  • Basic computer and advanced ICT programmes.
  • Basic skills and craft programmes.

Special programmes for workers in special areas, including farmers, fisher folk, seamen, vendors, construction and hospitality workers, and others.

Community Education in areas such as disaster preparedness, vector control, HIV /AIDS, nutrition, etc.

If our country is to continue to modernize and grow we must adequately prepare our citizens for all the challenges we will face in this hostile global economic environment, and the Department of Adult and Continuing Education is prepared to lead the way.