CASTRIES, Saint Lucia -- The Ministry of Education, Human Resource Development and Labour in St Lucia is undertaking a strategic and wide-ranging programme called the education enhancement through information and communication technology programme (EEICTP).
Presented under the branding, ICT - The I Can Technology, this project will introduce and integrate information and communication technology in schools and communities, especially in the rural areas, in order to increase the country’s overall competitiveness in the global market.
In recent years the economic and business environments have seen many changes. The most apparent being the shift away from hard physical labour toward knowledge-based, service oriented economies. Unfortunately many sectors of the economy remain ill-equipped in this new age.
Rural communities and persons in lower economic brackets are falling behind in this world of rapid global, technological and economic development. In addition, many involved in agriculture, fishing and some in tourism are unaware of the ways in which information and communications technology can make them more productive.
Recognizing the growing need to include ICT as a learning tool and provide adults with greater access to ICT training, the ministry has taken active steps to address technology integration. The ministry has a three-pronged approach to restructuring the education system to achieve this goal.
First, students will benefit from a revised education policy and a reformed curriculum. Second, educators will be equipped with better skills through training and the acquisition of competencies to use and promote ICT as a teaching and learning tool. Third, modern ICT spaces will provide more pupil-centered teaching and learning environments. All these enhancements in education will result in stronger linkages between schools and surrounding communities.
Building the foundation for sustainable economic, social, and cultural development of rural communities in Saint Lucia is the ultimate goal of this project. The ministry anticipates that establishing efficient technologically-based infrastructure, will modernize the teaching and learning process as well as enable better decision making and planning.
The education enhancement through information and communication technology programme is funded by the European Union (EU) through the Special Framework of Assistance (SFA) 2008.