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Mar 17, 2023

Free Education in Toledo and Stann Creek Districts in 2023

Francis Fonseca

Four high schools in Belize City are currently benefiting from the Ministry of Education’s free education program. Last week Friday, Prime Minister John Briceño announced that students in the Toledo and Stann Creek districts will soon see the free education program come to their schools.  When we caught up with Minister Fonesca today in Orange Walk, we asked him for further details on the rollout of the program in southern Belize. Here is what he told us.


Francis Fonseca, Minister of Education

“It’s being extended to Southern Belize. Yeah. We have the four government schools on the south side of Belize. Um, so we’re expanding that program on the south side. We are going to expand that program on the south side, but we are also expanding it to the south of Belize, so two schools in Toledo and two schools in, San Creek to start with.  So at, you know we are very, very excited about this initiative. It’s a slow process, but it’s an important process with the results from the pilot we’ve had on the south side of Belize City. We’ve, we’re absolutely pleased with the results. Obviously want to continue to do more but we have been able to put these students in school. We’ve been able to enroll an additional, I think two hundred students who were not in school previously into these four institutions. Um, and we’re going to continue to work on that. So, it’s critically important. As I always say, it’s a comprehensive program, so it’s easy to just talk about free education. It’s much more than that. It’s not just about tuition. Um, some people get confused about that. It’s also about feed a feeding program. It’s about school supplies. It’s about digital devices. It’s about uniforms; it’s about shoes and tennis. Um, so it’s a comprehensive approach to Education. Um, so I’m very proud of that program and I’m very proud that we have the full support of the government, the Cabinet, to expand it to the south. And of course, you know, we are in year two. We have three years to go in government. We’ll continue to expand this project, uh, each and every year.”

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