More than 4000 persons have applied to study at the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE).
This was revealed by Education Minister Priya Manickchand on Monday evening during a social media programme.
While addressing claims that teachers are leaving the profession in Guyana, Minister Manickchand announced that CPCE has seen in excess of 4000 applications.
“We don’t have that happening now. I just told you something that surprised me, so I’ll repeat it for you, that we have more than 4000 persons applying to teach, applying to go to the college so that they could be teachers.”
She noted that the salary for teachers was attracting persons to join the profession.
“So our starting salary as a teacher, people say these things and they become clichés that become truth, but our starting salary as a teacher is actually more than you would get as a teller in the bank and so people are choosing teaching,” she explained.
However, the Minister acknowledged that much improvement was still needed.
“Now, I’m not going to sit here and tell you it’s a fantastic top-of-the-line profession; in terms of salaries it is not, there is still much room for improvement as there is regarding teachers across the country. I don’t really think you could pay teachers for what they do, don’t care how high you raise the salaries, teachers are doing so much more teaching, but the starting salary is not so bad. People actually choosing teaching now,” she said.
Meanwhile, the Minister also announced that the Ministry was examining a few schools in Regions Five (Mahaica-Berbice) and Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) to implement the Sixth Form programme.
Annandale Secondary School and Tagore Memorial Secondary School are the options.
“We’re looking to do it at Annandale and Tagore in Berbice…at this point,” Manickchand noted, adding that capacity played a critical factor in these schools receiving the Sixth Form programme.
“It’s really space. We have to get physical space at some of those schools before we can do it.”
Last year, the Education Ministry launched the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations (CAPE) programme at the West Demerara Secondary School (WDSS).
The Education Minister said during her remarks that it was important that this programme be brought closer to students in the region who were desirous of pursuing it.
Similarly, last year, Anna Regina Multilateral School became the first school in Region Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam) to offer the Sixth Form programme. (G2)