BROOKLYN,NY– The World Bank on Monday approved US$13.5 million in additional financing to support efforts to improve education in Guyana, as the COVID-19 pandemic takes a toll on the sector.
The financing is specifically for the ongoing Guyana Secondary Education Improvement Project, which aims to improve teaching in mathematics and increase enrolment in secondary schools and provide equipment and training to support innovative technology-assisted education delivery methods.
The additional financing will also be used to complete two secondary schools’ construction, supply resources for those schools, and build a new secondary school.
“Guyana’s education sector has made significant progress in the last decade; however, strengthening learning outcomes remains a priority, and the pandemic is hitting the education sector hard,” said Ozan Sevimli, World Bank Resident Representative for Jamaica and Guyana.
“Through the ongoing project, we are pleased to support the government in piloting the use of technology and innovative ways of teaching, which are particularly relevant during distance learning. The new financing will support the pilot of a “smart classroom” initiative to help the sector build back better from the pandemic.”
The World Bank’s additional financing will also provide more resources to an existing pilot program that uses adaptive learning software on tablets for mathematics education. The project emphasizes the use of technology and higher quality math education, both of which are important to prepare Guyanese students for future employment. Capacity building for teachers is an important component of the project to improve the quality of secondary education.
The project is also supporting the construction of secondary schools in Regions 3 and 4, which include nearly 30 percent of the country’s secondary school population and over 40 percent of the population living in poverty. Access to high-quality secondary schools can reduce overcrowding, improve learning conditions, and contribute to increasing enrolment.
The Guyana Secondary Education Project, which was approved in 2014, has been extended to 2023 to ensure the successful completion of all the activities.
The original project has already developed mathematics standards for secondary school teachers, supported mathematics training for over 600 teachers, and distributed 200 mathematics teaching kits.