Sub-Regional Meeting for the Follow-up of CONFINTEA VI

Enhancing Lifelong Learning Opportunities for Youth and Adults in the Caribbean was the theme of the 2016 Sub-regional Meeting for the Follow-up of CONFINTEA VI held June 30 to July 1, 2016 in Montego Bay.
The main objective of the meeting was to review the status of adult learning and education in the Caribbean, focusing on the UNESCO Recommendation on Adult Learning and Education (2015) and the Belém Framework for Action (2009). This will inform the CONFINTEA mid-term review.

State Minister for Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, who addressed the closing ceremony cited the need for ongoing collaboration involving stakeholders in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and wider Diasporas to support the advancement of adult education. “As a region, we must ensure that the benchmarks and best practices emerging are validated (and) that adult and lifelong learning is viewed within the context of general education, technical vocational education and training (TVET), special education and literacy, as we continue to train our people for the future,” he said.

Additionally, Mr. Green said regional states must continue to conduct research which identifies new trends and subjects that will become relevant in schools, and tailor institutions’ curricula to meet the needs of constantly changing workforces.

Mr. Green commended UNESCO for providing the forum that facilitated the participants’ deliberations, thereby enabling them to make decisions which were expected to benefit the region over the medium to long-term.

Notable among these, he said, was a proposal for the appointment of a regional ‘Champion Education Minister’ to lobby support for and oversee implementation of the UNESCO recommendations.

The two-day conference, was attended by Education Ministers, Permanent Secretaries and senior education professionals from Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Curacao, Grenada, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Maarten, and Montserrat.