Wednesday morning, August 12, 2009 at the Sonesta, Maho Beach Hotel and Casino, there was a conference geared towards Vocational schools on St. Maarten.
The goal of the conference is to provide teachers and managers of the vocational schools with information on the transformation that is going to take place within vocational Schools.
The change is a follows: that due to the parliamentary law of 11C, vocational education has to become more labor market oriented education (LMOE, in Dutch: AGO). The goal is to provide course offerings that have the goal of students becoming competent at work, home, and during leisure activities. The curriculum for such are the mandatory course work: English, Math, Man & Society, Physical Education, Information Technology, which also has to include the following subjects: personality development, Social Skills, Preparation for the labor market/practical subjects.
Commissioner of Education William Marlin spoke about the need for the vocational orientation towards the market as a good one, necessary, and long overdue. We cannot talk about these issues unless we talk about the economy, the labor market, and immigration. Therefore, it is essential to train our teachers, as we are doing here today, and take advantage of the opportunity to gain as much information and knowledge as possible. Enjoy and much success, he told the gathering of around 25 teachers and several school managers.
The course will last for two days, consisting and dealing with such topics as: educational structure of the Netherlands Antilles, the labor market, related documents concerning the different issues, among other interesting topics.
Quincy Harrigan, Head of the Education department, introduced the topics to the audience of teachers and Heads of schools, saying that we are here to start the necessary training, to get the vocational schools more in line with the labor market. This innovation of sorts also comes with funding for such programs.