BTIA Working To Bring Technical Education Back

December 29, 2016

The Bermuda Technical Institute Alumni [BTIA] is continuing to “deliberate over strategies and instruments to bring technical education back into the public education system.”

A spokesperson said, “We recognize the current deficit of technically trained persons in society and the negative impact it has on industry. We also recognize the deficit in our student population, leaving school ill-equipped to meet the demands of the job markets; most notable being the effect on young males.

“Over the last couple of months, along with our internal meetings, we have met with various stakeholders, namely the Ministry of Education, Bermuda Union of Teachers, Bermuda College, Sandy’s Rotary and leaders in various fields, such as the construction, motor and automobile industries.

“We are pleased and very encouraged to have our preliminary thoughts received favorably by all of the stakeholders.

2 hour 45 minute video of the BTIA forum earlier this year

“From an educational intervention perspective, we had to consider where technology is today. We have also had to consider that we need to reintroduce technical education, as it relates at the Middle School level, with 21st. century competencies.

“We want, in essence, to transfer the model of the former Bermuda Technical Institute [BTI] experience into the existing educational structures. The first three years at the former BTI was a comprehensive exposure to all the trades and industries. The last two years gave the students a choice of the field of study they wanted to pursue.

“Bermuda has adequate facilities both at the Middle and High School levels. We will need to expand the infrastructure particularly in the Middle Schools to accommodate technical education. It is our understanding that the Cedar Bridge Academy was initially designed to accommodate technical studies which includes Hospitality and Performing Arts.

“We envisage students having a choice of a range of technology options, including a full academic programme, when we combine the use of the Berkeley Institute and use of the Bermuda College campuses, where each can have varying intensities of technical training for High Schools students.

“The additional feature will be to engage industry as part of the overall training and education of our students, as our aim is to reconnect industry with education, through apprenticeships and onsite exposure.

“We recognize there will be a new structural cost as well as increased costs for what we anticipate as a highly trained Faculty. As was the case with the development and implementation of the former BTI, there was a partnership with private sector and industry.

“The BTIA, as a catalyst, intends to re-awaken that industry partnership, and believe a lot of the cost can be shared, as the ultimate beneficiary is the entire community.

“We were pleased to have learned that the Ministry of Education will be developing a special Committee to look at all aspects of education going forward, and we were very delighted to be invited to participate with that Committee, to allow our thoughts and ideas to be expressed. We look forward to participate more fully with the Public in a more collaborative exercise to engage everyone.

“Additionally, the BTIA recognizes the need for other vehicles of intervention to tackle greater societal problems which have an impact on education.”

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Comments (6)

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  1. Ladeej says:

    The reintroduction of technical education in Bermuda is long overdue. I commend the BTIA and I trust that the Ministry of Education will see this initiative through to the end for the betterment of our students and our island. Technical education is an important component of the curriculum which should no longer be neglected.

  2. Fisherman says:

    Tried to get my son and his classmates included in the carpentry, motorbike/car, electrical and barber shop at Cedarbridge – was looked at like I was nuts. They have what I feel is the best facilities for the TEch programmes but do not involve the Special Students (students who are slow learners or have disabilities) class in any of the classes up there. My thought is that they feel, they are not truly capable of learning. Thank you to Mr. Dean Foggo, for taking time for these students in his Computer class, he met these students where they were. These children are gifted and they can only exercise their gifts if they are encouraged to find what they are. Most times, Counsellors are not on the same page as the parents. My son’s records had him aged 16yrs and he was at the time, 12 – Go fish!

  3. Kim Smith says:

    I think adding to the technical education options will be valuable. Congratulations to the alumni group.

  4. FYI says:

    Amen, Amen, and AMEN!!! Right decision!!!

  5. Oh please says:

    There is no need to privatize Technical Education..

    Bermuda please don’t lose sight of the forest for the trees.

  6. Real talk says:

    How bout don’t rely on Govt and do it yourself and put your money where your mouth is. Open up the school yourselves and put together a business plan to make it affordable for all to attend and have fundraisers and sponsors to assist with costs, as well as the parents and students themselves. At this point Govt will not be getting it done and as Bob says there is no money in the budget.

    Good luck folks and a great idea!