An unprecedented 51 members of the Department of Education Services have successfully completed the instructional component of the National Educational Leadership Programme.
The programme is part of the Department of Education’s continuing effort to provide high quality professional development opportunities for educators.
NELP offers three benefits to those who successfully complete the programme. First, successful participants can earn the professional qualification, which is now a requirement for school leadership in Cayman.
Secondly, participants earn a Post-Graduate Certificate from the London Centre for Leadership in Learning at the University of London’s Institute of Education. Thirdly, the programme offers increased accreditation which can be used to pursue a Masters Degree at the University of London or other accredited educational institution.
The NELP programme, which started in 2003, was developed specifically for the Cayman Islands and was previously administered by the Schools’ Inspectorate under the direction of the Ministry of Education’s Chief Officer Mary Rodrigues, in her former role as Chief Inspector of Schools.
‘Having been involved from the very beginning, it was a pleasure for me to accompany the Hon. Minister of Education, Rolston Anglin to meet the participants and observe some of the training firsthand,’ said Mrs. Rodrigues.
‘NELP is an initiative that focuses squarely on improving teaching and learning through strong school leadership. This and other such initiatives will continue to have the Ministry’s strong support.’
‘The participants are experienced educators or aspiring leaders from Grand Cayman as well as Cayman Brac,’ she said, adding: ‘Judging by the level of excitement and enthusiasm that was witnessed during the visit, I anticipate that many of them will use the increased accreditation to pursue Masters Degree’s once they have completed this Post Graduate Certificate course.’
Dr. Karen Edge, PhD, from the Institute of Education in London, is one of the NELP instructors. She elaborated on the course by saying: ‘This collaboration with the Department of Education Services is one of our most innovative MA Leadership collaborations to date.
‘This is a unique venture and I am not aware of any other country that has decided to build their collective educational leadership capacity in such a way.’
The NELP programme is one of many externally accredited professional development opportunities available to members of the education service in Cayman. During the 2008-09 school year, 94 per cent of educators employed by the Department of Education Services took advantage of the various professional development opportunities currently being offered by the Department.