Quality Education for Haiti to be Modeled on Finnish System

One of the most crucial elements to building and sustaining a healthy economy in Haiti is a developed education system. Recently the governments of Haiti and Finland have partnered up to address solutions to the problem of adequately educating the Haitian populace.

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Minister of Education, Nesmy Manigat, and his equivalent Krista Kiuru of Finland signed a cooperation agreement that includes, among other considerations, teacher training and curriculum reform. The signing occurred at an international conference on the quality of education in the presence of Deputy Director Ecclesiaste Telemaque and Quisqueya University Rector Jacky Lumarque, as well as other Finnish educators and senior ministerial officials from both countries.

At the conference technical professionals and stakeholders joined in the discussion to decide what strategy is best for Haiti's education system. Based on previous meetings between the two ministries it has been agreed cooperation needs to happen in the area of teacher training and curriculum reform. Minister Kiuru said Finland's current and highly-regarded education system has been a trial-and-error process, and what it has learned is teacher training lies at the core of a successful education system. Minister Manigat picked up on this thread and added, "We are currently developing with UNESCO a strategy to allow our 27,000 public school teachers . . . of being real useful" An interpretation of Manigat's meaning would seem to be with proper training public school teachers can make a real contribution to the education of Haiti's children.

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