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Feb 28, 2023

Building Resilient Schools Infrastructure Across the Caribbean

Rodolphe Samuel

We also spoke with Doctor Samuel about the responses promoted by the initiative in the event that a school is destroyed by a natural disaster. He also touched on the issue of technology in education and its limited availability and access to marginalized communities. These are critical issues pertaining to disaster risk reduction.


Dr. Rodolphe Samuel, Minister of Education, Saint Maarten

“What we do is one, we look at the building codes again. So, if you are going to repair the schools or if you are going to rebuild a school that you would be rebuilding it in a way that it will be more resilient against the storms. That is one of the things that we definitely do and in a time if you have a storm and some schools are damaged then you can also think about changing the schedule. So then you can make a schedule for some students in the morning and some in the afternoon. For those schools that can have education continue. You can also make a choice, for those students that are in the exam classes, that are more critical, you find a way to bring them back quicker and then you phase in the other groups. An idea, because we learned that not all parents can pay for internet service, not all children have a device. Sometimes there are no parents at home to supervise that the students are really working. One of the ideas that is on the table is that you can do a portal in collaboration with the internet provider, you can do a special portal only for educational use and it will be much economical. The student cannot surf the World Wide Web, but they can always go into the portal and access those programs that are provided for them, specifically in those frames.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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