Montserrat has agreed to pilot a new certification from the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC).
The CXC® Citizenship and Technical Education Certificate (CTEC) will be introduced from September 2022 here, with a full roll out across the region slated for September 2023, officials told members of the media on Friday.
The media briefing came at the end of a week of consultation with local education officials and stakeholders to introduce the new certification.
Officials said, the new qualification is a response to the need for a more competency-based qualification which focuses on the development of an agreed skills framework.
Lyston Skerritt, Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education said they want to close the gap in the education experience for all students. The goal, he added, is that every student should complete secondary education with a qualification that prepares them for the world.
Skerritt said Minister of Education Charles Kirnon was keen on the new qualification and that the current rules for the government, which require a minimum of five CXC passes to gain employment should be adjusted. The focus should be on the student meeting the requirements for the specific role rather than a one-rule-for-all standard.
The CXC fact sheet on the new programme, said CTEC will focus on the creation of the Ideal Caribbean Person (ICP) who is empowered and equipped to productively contribute to growth and development in a dynamic socio-cultural environment.
Dr. Margaret Niles, CXC Manager-Educational Research and Innovation said CTEC is the organisation’s response to the urgent need for reskilling and upgrading post COVID-19 pandemic. It aims to help students be prepared for the future with foundational skills that will support the movement of human capital across the region and the world.
CTEC will be aligned to Level 3 of the CARICOM Qualifications Framework and will certify both the in school and the out-of-school demographics.
The CTEC Conceptual Framework is built on mandatory Foundational Core Skills and three other categories of skill – Transversal, Life, and Occupational skills.
The Foundational Skills will focus on building the core competencies of linguistic, numeric, citizenship and character and digital literacies. The Transversal and Life
skills will be converged under five broad themes namely, Global Citizenship, Critical and Innovative Thinking, Digital Literacy, Personal Awareness and Management of Self, and Understanding Self and Others.
Skerritt said with CXC’s assistance they will evaluate the island’s current curriculum and the quality of instruction to ensure it delivers these skills for every student. The new framework is intended for implementation at the Montserrat Secondary School and will be spearheaded by former principal Cherlyn Hogan.
It is also intended that private sector organisations which offer programmes aligned with the CTEC framework will be engaged to support the equipping of students with the requisite skills and knowledge.
Dr. Eduardo Ali, Pro-Registrar and Deputy CEO of CXC said consultations on introducing CTEC qualifications are also taking place in Guyana and Jamaica. The new certification was necessary to help the Caribbean prepare its people for the future locally, regionally, and internationally. Former teachers and adult education institutions would be the ideal strategic partners, Ali said for providing the additional capacity needed for CTEC.