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Aug 23, 2013

Open Learning; unconventional learning launched at Gwen Lizarraga High

This morning, under the patronage of the University of Belize, the Ministry of Education and the Commonwealth Open Schooling Association, Open School in Belize was officially launched. It’s the first of its kind and is being implemented at Gwen Lizarraga High School. The initiative is supported by the Commonwealth of Learning and is to foster the development of open schools countrywide and for the development of the University of Belize Open and Distance Learning Unit. Open learning is not the traditional way of teaching and is defined as a range of flexible approaches, using open and distance methods to provide structured opportunities for studying. Principal of Gwen Lizarraga High School, Doctor Lorna McKay explains how the students that attend the institution; especially the evening division will benefit from the program.


Dr. Lorna McKay, Principal, Gwen Lizarraga High School

Lorna McKay

“In Belize, we are very used to the conventional way of learning whereby we look at face to face in the classroom. Students come to school sitting in a classroom and many times they are very bored. But open learning is geared towards technology; towards the internet; towards online delivery of education and content. Whereby we’ll have teachers interacting with students online through discussion boars, through assignments, where students can go in download their notes, read, interact with the teacher; talk to the teachers online and also do their assignments are post them back. It is corrected right there online. There are many students at Gwen Liz night division who find it difficult; who are challenged to come to school in the evening times. And so with that, this will pose some sort of benefit for them so that they can just learn out there along with coming here. We are using a blended modality whereby we will still have some conventional type delivery along with the open school learning.  I had a vision for Gwen Liz when I came here. My vision was to educate youth of all socio-economic backgrounds; people who needed to get educated. And we have quite a number of people like that. So my vision was that and I keep moving forward because as I’ve said earlier, I wouldn’t be behind anything that is not working and I do have a passion for kids, for students, for educators and for learners.”


Internet hotspots will be placed at identified locations throughout the city to provide an easy access for the students to be able to log on to the website and access information. 

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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