Teacher of the Year nominees urged to keep pace with changing world

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The group is pictured in front of Government House, March 28, 2019 with the Governor General, at the front, centre; Minister Lloyd, centre left; and Permanent Secretary Lorraine Armbrister, centre right. (BIS Photos/Letisha Henderson)

Opportunities for tuition assistance with Masters and Doctor of Philosophy degrees for public school teachers are on the horizon. The Hon. Jeffrey Lloyd, Minister of Education, said teachers need to evolve and master subject areas so funds will be set aside for this purpose. “When I became the Minister of Education almost all of the money was going toward Bachelor’s Degrees. What about Master’s? What about PhDs? I said no, no, no. We are going to apportion a certain amount of the money toward Master’s Degrees,” he said. The Education Minister made the announcement at the 13th National Teacher of the Year Award (NTOYA) Pinning Ceremony, Thursday, March 28. Forty-eight teachers from public schools representing 13 districts in New Providence and the Family Islands were celebrated and congratulated for excellent work. They were also individually pinned by Governor General, Her Excellency the Most Hon. Dame Marguerite Pindling, under whose patronage the event was held at Mount Fitzwilliam, Government House.

In attendance was Lorraine Armbrister, Permanent Secretary; representatives of the Bahamas Union of Teachers, school administrators, family, friends and well-wishers of the nominees. Participants included: Anthonique Cash-Josey, National Teacher of the Year 2017-2019; Benjamin Whyte, Co-chairperson, NTOYA Committee; Zindora Munnings, Eva Hilton Primary School nominee; Rashanna Curry, Jack Hayward High School nominee; Gaylene Bain, Senior Education Officer and Krystal Sweeting of Government High School. Minister Lloyd thanked the teachers and informed them that the Ministry of Education is grateful for them. “Today is the epicenter of our recognition of you – for the greatness, splendour and magnificence of what you are. Please understand those people who sit before you called students: you are truly changing their lives and they are changing yours at the same time,” said Minister Lloyd. “You can never ever be paid. No matter how many thank you’s, endorsements, celebrations we have — please understand that your satisfaction comes from that vocational call in your life, an answer of God to be of service to Him. That’s why we are here. Not because it’s the money, wonderful working conditions.”

Minister Lloyd informed the nominees that the world is changing at a frenetic pace which they are required to accept, get into the currency of life and change with. “This means you must continue to evolve, to develop and to advance, not only in the use of these technological [accessories] that we have today — but to come to a greater degree of sensitivity of what you are being called to be as a teacher.” He said today teachers take on the role of parent, nurse, doctor, psychiatrist, counselor and mediator. “Our sensitivity to that growing and deeper awareness of who we are called to be is your mandate, and my mandate,” said Minister Lloyd.

Minister of Education, the Hon. Jeffrey Lloyd, at podium, addresses the talented teachers.

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