Schools restructuring plan takes first steps towards change
The first stage of a restructure of the school system has started, the Minister of Education said today.
Diallo Rabain added that a team had been created to carry out research on how to carry out the major changes.
He said that the Board of Education and advisory group Bermuda First have started discussions about the creation of an Education Authority.
Mr Rabain said: “As we move forward to bring Bermuda a transformation in education, we will continue to inform, engage and collaborate.”
The Bermuda Redesign Team was set up this month to help lead the Learning First programme to tackle changes the Government said were needed to create a fairer educational system.
It consists of a total of 54 people and includes teachers, school principals, Government officials and school board members.
Mr Rabain said that the consultancy group Innovation Unit Australia New Zealand will help the Bermuda Redesign Team on the research side.
He added that the two groups will send questionnaires to teachers, pupils and principals next month to ask about their experiences in the public school system.
Officials want to know what works well in schools at the moment, problems they faced, what improvements were needed and the level of engagement with parents and the public.
Mr Rabain added that the information would be used to build an “authentically Bermudian, best-in-class school system”.
He said that 82 people applied for a position on the team in early October and that 175 people expressed interest in the opportunity.
He added: “This is the first of many opportunities for the Bermudian public to participate in the Learning First journey.
“In the coming months, we will be posting notices and keeping the general public abreast of new developments.”
Mr Rabain appealed to the public to follow the Learning First Programme on social media.
He added that a discussion group will be launched next month on the Government website to allow people affected by the public education system to give their views on how schools should be restructured.
The Government plan to change the education system will also include the end of middle schools and the introduction of a two-tier system to include signature schools at the senior level.
The education minister insisted that the design of the new education system would be left up to Bermudians and added that Innovation Unit had been brought on board to offer guidance.
He said: “As it is critical to ensure we have a school system that is specifically for Bermuda, the concept, design and execution of our reform will be carried out by Bermudians.”
Mr Rabain added: “We intend to keep the guiding principles of transparency, inclusivity and engagement to the redesign of the public school system to produce a system the Bermudian public deserves.”
The public can register their views on schools at forum.gov.bm when it is up and running.