The Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation has over the last decade, embarked on a number of strategies to support the achievement of the Education for All (EFA) Goals by 2015.

This was pointed out today by Chief Education Officer (CEO), Laurie King, as he addressed the start of a Stakeholders??? Forum at the United Nations (UN) House, Hastings, Christ Church, to examine the island???s progress to date.

Stressing that these goals were aimed at sustaining the transformation of our education system and at maintaining the gains at every level, Mr. King said the Ministry was seeking to promote and strengthen the application of science, technology and innovation as key drivers of productivity, and enhanced competitiveness and development of the nation???s people to facilitate growth in all sectors of the economy.

He outlined seven key domains, which he noted would underpin these efforts to achieve enhanced learning outcomes for all students and improve growth and development at the national level.

These were listed as: physical well-being of all students; social and emotional development; culture, the arts and creative arts and the potential of the creative industries, within the context of the inputs from key educational institutions to foster growth and development and literacy and communication skills.

He said that others were: learning approaches and cognition within the context of learning for life and personal and national development; numeracy and mathematics to address national deficiencies in performance in this area and science, technology and innovation.

The CEO further noted that to achieve these goals emphasis would be placed on institutional strengthening and capacity building to ensure the Ministry becomes ???more effective, efficient and responsive to the development of citizens??? as a vital component of improving national productivity and competitiveness of the labour force.

???The Ministry will also take advantage of strategic institutional linkages and partnerships within the public and across the private sectors to realise its goal of contributing to the development of a highly productive, competitive and innovative people,??? Mr. King said.

Meanwhile, Deputy Resident Representative for the United Nation???s Development Programme in Barbados and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, Lara Blanco, in commending Barbados, noted that countries in different regions were required to conduct a thorough review of their achievements and experiences since 2000.

???These assessments will identify emerging issues and challenges, highlight good practices and draw salient lessons on prospects for education in the future,??? she said while adding that the overall aim of the 2015 reviews was to evaluate progress made towards achieving EFA goals and the extent to which countries have kept their commitments.

The UNDP official also urged countries to submit their national reports by the end of June 2014 and to call on the UN for any further technical assistance and information that would be necessary in the preparation of these.

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