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Regional Education Change Management Seminar Held Here

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Contact: John Emmanuel

February 25, 1999 - Education officials will Thursday, conclude a two-day seminar on Change Management taking place at the Auberge Seraphine. At the Seminar, organized by the OECS Eastern Caribbean Education Reform Project, regional delegates are considering ways of not only effecting change in the education system but mechanisms aimed at handling those changes.

According to Lorna Callender who Heads the OECS Education Reform Unit (OERU), no longer could educators cling to the old patterns of delivery. "In the past education was simply a matter of making children learn, whether it was with the strap, chalk and talk or cramming and spoon feeding. In the past the emphasis was on knowledge transfer and not on knowledge research, with the teacher being the fountain of knowledge. Today we know itís not just a matter of making children learn but as educators we have to develop the human potential."

The change, Mrs. Callender says, represented the need to develop and satisfy the man power needs of regional countries bringing students into a state of job readiness, making them problem solvers and critical thinkers.

The St. Lucia seminar forms part of a series of activities taking place within the region coinciding with efforts at reforming the education system.

Chief Education Officer - Gaspard Charlemagne who declared the workshop opened, called upon participants to embrace the changing environment facing the education system and adapt to manage those changes. "Let us concede that change can be stressful and for many of us who have had bad experiences with change we fear that it will erode our positions, yet we all must agree that change is inevitable. What is critical for us as educators is to adopt a posture where we can remain open to new ideas and view situations and options critically."

The two-day seminar will seek to highlight new techniques available for managing the change process underway in the education system.


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