By Benjamin Flowers
The Ministry of Education, Youth, and Sports, through its collaboration with Price Waterhouse Coopers and Peaceworks International, donated 10 laptops to high schools this week, to aid their delivery of financial literacy and entrepreneurship materials in schools.
The ministry handed over 2 Lenovo brand laptops with a combined value of $9,000, to representatives from Canaan SDA High School, St. John’s College, Pallotti High School, Edward P. Yorke High School, and Belize High School.
Apart from the laptops PWC and Peaceworks will also be sponsoring 75 high school scholarships, valued at US$40,000 later this year, and will send a shipment of school supplies such as books, and stationery.
Deputy Chief Education Officer, Carol Babb, explained that the laptops form part of a greater project which began last month where the organizations hosted financial literacy camps for both primary and high school students.
Babb said that the ministry has been placing heavy emphasis on financial literacy since 2008, as a means of student development and a way to provide employment opportunities for graduating students, in an ever-competitive job market.
“We know that the government will not have jobs to give to all the graduates, so what the teachers and principals will do is equip students with the necessary skills to create employment for themselves.” Babb said.
“Entrepreneurship is really a life skill, teaching the students how to plan, how to budget, how to save, will help them to become more productive citizens.”
Jamie Usher, principal of BHS, said that the laptops will go a long way enhancing the financial literacy components of her school’s curriculum which is mandatory for two years at BHS.
The financial literacy camps were heldEducation initiative called “The Belize Project” which benefitted some 2,000 students in July.
Students were taught the basics of creating budgets,creating bank accounts and savings programs, and encouraged to come up with ideas for small businesses.”
The interactive program used games, and drew examples from Belizean success stories, to from relevant and impactful life lessons for participants.