THE student participation rate for Tertiary education in Trinidad and Tobago has now risen to a high of 57 percent, Tertiary Education and Skills Training Minister Fazal Karim revealed during debate on the Nurses and Midwives Bill (Amendment) in the Senate on Tuesday.
“When I assumed duties in 2010 we had a participation rate in the sector of 42 percent, but because of the expansion and the initiatives we have taken in the Ministry and in the People’s Partnership Government, I am pleased to announce that as of today, we currently have 67,000 persons participating in the tertiary education sector. Fifty five thousand of those are accessing the Government Assistance for Tuition Expenses,” Karim told the Senate.
“It is with great satisfaction I make this announcement as we move towards the target outlined in our manifesto of attaining a participation rate of 60 percent by the year 2015.”
Senator Karim stated that the growth in enrollment in higher education stemmed from the same innovative approaches being applied in this Bill addressing the shortage of nurses in our healthcare system through cultivating apprenticeships.
He also said that the Bill includes increased penalties and a wider remittance through the Ministry of Health, the Nurse’s Council, and the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago as well as amendments to improve the efficiency and function of the Nurse’s Council.
In response to Opposition Senator Avinash Singh’s criticism on the country not getting value for money with GATE, Karim, while waving two sheets of paper in the air, said, “I have before me the two contracts for GATE which will ensure participants are tied in for two years to work in any part of Trinidad and Tobago whether it be in the public service or private sector.”