Education ministry wants National Parents Platform

POSTED: 11/28/12 2:23 PM

St. Maarten – The Education Ministry is working on the establishment of a National Parents Platform to support the involvement of parents in the education of their children.

“Parents all over the world are looking for support and assistance to raise their children. Parents on St. Maarten are no exception when it comes to that. Through the Dutch funding project for Innovations in Education that is being channeled through Usona and the Division for Educational Innovations, the parents of all children in FBE and PSVE schools can participate in parenting programs such as Active Parenting Now in 3, Active Parenting of Teens and Family in Action,” the Ministry stated in a press release.

All these programs are free of charge for the parents and are conducted by enthusiastic and experienced   leaders and trainers. There are also additional programs offered by some schools to accommodate the parents where needed.

To get parents more involved and truly be the voice and advocate of their children, all subsidized schools are required to have a parents’ committee as stipulated in the Ordinance for Foundation Based Education, Secondary Education and Secondary Vocational Education.

Presently almost all subsidized schools have a parents’ teachers association or a parents’ teachers foundation.  The members of these PTA or PTF’s are being informed in several sessions on the regulations, duties, rights, benefits   of a parents’ committee.

The ultimate goal is that these committees are represented in a unified body, the National Parents Platform for St. Maarten.

This platform will function as an advisory body to the Ministry of Education. Parents will no longer be there in the parents’ committee to solely take care of fundraising, barbeque and fun activities, but will also be able to ensure that they contribute to the quality of the education that is being offered to their children.

As part of the parental involvement programs all parents have been given a survey to fill out regarding the indicators of parental involvement. A large number of parents have indicated their willingness to help but that they are unfortunately unable to find the time to do so effectively.

To prepare representatives of the PTA and PTF’s for their tasks in the National Parents Platform an information session Division of Educational Innovation organized an information session on Monday.

Next week Dr. Judith Arndell will host an interactive session regarding interaction between people with different characters.


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