Address By Sen. The Hon. David Andrews On The Start Of The 2023/2024 School Year 

PR – Fellow Grenadians, 

It gives me great pleasure, a sense of pride and optimism to address our students, parents  and guardians, teachers, principals, and school administrators, as we embark on our new  school year 2023/2024. 

The reopening of a new school term is an exciting and crucial time for students, parents, and educators alike. It holds significant importance for several reasons. 

Firstly, it is a Fresh Start. 

The new school year offers students a clean slate and a chance to make a fresh start  academically and socially. They can leave behind any past challenges or setbacks and  approach the year with renewed enthusiasm and optimism.  

Secondly, a chance to set achievable goals and new targets. This is an opportunity for  students to set new academic and personal goals. These goals can provide motivation and  direction for the year ahead, helping students stay focused on their aspirations.  

Thirdly, Preparation for the Future.  

Each school year brings students closer to their educational milestones and eventual career  paths. 

My government is particularly excited about this new school term as we have implemented  several measures that will benefit all of our young people.  

Government has established its Free Tuition Programme. This programme will allow all  students of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique to further their education beyond  secondary school. We have removed all Tuition Fees from the Preschool, Primary,  Secondary and Tertiary level institutions like the T.A. Marryshow community College  (TAMCC) and the New Life Organisation (NEWLO). Thousands of our young students are  currently enjoying this policy decision of Government as it opens the gate for more of our  young people to access learning and will ease the financial burden of our parents and  guardians. 

Added to this, Government has received approval for the UNESCO-funded TVET Policy,  which features transformative elements such as: 

– The Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Expansion  Programme in select primary schools, which was launched on May 9, 2023. 

– The re-introduction of the 6th Form and Centres of excellence in select  schools/institutions; and 

– The drafting of legislation to mandate the extension of the school age to 18. 

Another Key initiative that we are especially excited about is the introduction of Grenadian  History in the upper primary and lower secondary levels. Incorporating local history into  the curriculum helps create well-rounded, informed citizens who appreciate their  community’s past and its role in shaping the present and future. It is about time that this  became part of our children’s learning experience for many reasons; – 

  1. Cultural Identity: to help students connect with their community’s roots, fostering a  sense of belonging and cultural identity. 
  2. Contextual Understanding: knowledge of our country’s history provides context for  broader historical events, helping students better comprehend national and global  narratives. 
  3. Preservation of Heritage; learning about our history encourages the preservation of  historical landmarks, traditions, and artifacts. 
  4. Critical Thinking: analysing local historical events fosters critical thinking and  research skills, which are transferable to other subjects. 

As a government and particularly the Ministry of Education, we are keen on ensuring that  our young people have the opportunities they need to further their learning while building  a career for the future. Whether this be in the technical, sporting or science fields, we will  continue to partner with our local, regional, and international counterparts to secure  scholarships and other educational aid to give our people a chance to develop themselves,  and by extension, this beautiful land of ours. 

In closing, I want to encourage our students, parents, and educators to see this new school  year as an opportunity to grow, learn and to make the most of every moment we spend in  the classroom. 

To our students, I want to emphasize the incredible potential that lies within each of you.  You are the future leaders, innovators, and change-makers of our world. Remember that  education is not just about acquiring knowledge; it’s about building character, nurturing  curiosity, and fostering a passion for lifelong learning. 

As you step into this new term, I encourage you to approach your studies with enthusiasm  and determination. Set clear goals for yourselves, both academically and personally. Don’t  be afraid to ask questions, seek help when needed, and collaborate with your peers.  Education is not a solitary journey; it’s a collective effort, and we are here to support you  every step of the way. 

But let us also remember that the school experience is not just about grades and exams. It’s about building friendships, discovering your interests, and exploring your talents. Get  involved in extracurricular activities, engage in community service, and challenge  yourselves to step out of your comfort zones. 

To our dedicated teachers and staff, your commitment to nurturing these young minds is  commendable. You play a vital role in shaping the future by imparting knowledge,  instilling values, and serving as mentors. Your dedication does not go unnoticed, for it is  the cornerstone of our educational institution.  

Together let us make this term one filled with inspiration and success. 

Here’s to a fantastic new school term filled with learning, success, and endless  possibilities.  

I thank you.