ST.KITTS: Hon.Shawn K. Richards Announces Plans For FREE Daycare

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(EMU) – St. Kitts, April 13, 2015: Minister of Education Hon. Shawn Richards announced on Friday that his Government stands by its promise to make day care in the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis accessible to all children and free of cost on a permanent basis.

The Deputy Prime Minister made this announcement as he toured several day care centres starting at the Sandy Point Nursery moving East to the Mc Knight Day Care Centre.

Minister Richards explained that the purpose of the tour  was to familiarize himself with the day-to-day workings of the centres as well as to assess their needs. The Education Minister pointed out specific priorities.

“Some have challenges in terms of space. Some have challenges in terms of repairs that need to be done to the facility . So, I am getting first-hand knowledge as to what the specific needs are so that going forward the Ministry of Education will be able to address the needs of the various nurseries and pre schools ” said Minster Richards.

During the tour,  various centre administrators expressed gratitude to Minister Richards and other education officials for visiting their institutions and for paying attention to the immediate and long term needs.

Administrator for the Old Road Day Care Centre Tahitia Douglas expressed gratitude for the visit by officials. “We are very pleased that the Honourable Shawn Richards and Officials of the Ministry have paid us a visit here at this centre. We have been experiencing a few problems. I am glad that they came here to see exactly what is going on so that we could receive some help.”

The Minister took the opportunity to visit the People Employment Programme’s (PEP) Day Care Training Centre which is housed upstairs the Challengers’ Day Care Centre. Past Early Childhood Coordinator Mrs. Vanta Walters, who is responsible for the training, expressed gratitude and shared that the training has done wonders for participants. Mrs. Walters also expressed a desire to see such training extended to more individuals across the Federation.

Accompanying Minister Richards on the tour were Permanent Secretary of Education Mrs. Ionie Liburd Willett; Chief Education Officer Mrs. Clarice Cotton; Education Planner Mr. Quinton Morton, Director of Early Childhood, Mrs Jacqueline Morris; and Project Officer Mr. Calvin Morton.

The ministry officials said they will continue the tour of pre-schools and other Government schools in the very near future.

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