Digital Education. The Art of the Possible. NOW!


The COVID-19 crisis has impacted education systems in an unprecedented way. For most education systems, e-Learning has arrived by default and instruction has become an emergency response.

New research is showing that this emergency paradigm shift in education is having significant consequences on most countries. The Caribbean region is no exception. Some experts have described this as “triage schooling”; others speak of the “culture shock” of moving mass education from physical classrooms to the home. The psychological impact of over-exposure to technology on young people is another concerning perspective. A counter view is that this was a needed shift, albeit sudden, for education systems that required a significant reboot.

In Saint Lucia, we have had to rapidly introduce virtual learning as an alternative to teaching and learning since the shutdown of schools from 13th March 2020. At the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College we have had a structured implementation of e-Learning by rapidly up-scaling faculty, expanding content development, and building outreach beyond the College to the wider educational sector. In this process we have had great support from the Ministry of Education and from the telecom providers in terms of zero-rating our portal. The outcomes are that we have a unified e-Learning platform, with 271 hosted courses, and a 500% increase in student enrolment on the platform. Of course, with this success comes challenges, opportunities and valuable lessons.

At this juncture, the Ministry of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development and Digicel in conjunction with the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College have deemed it necessary to organize an e-Symposium on the topic: “Digital Education: The Art of the Possible, NOW!”. The e-Symposium is scheduled for Wednesday, 6th May 2020 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. (Eastern Time).

Organizers

  • Ministry of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development
  • Sir Arthur Lewis Community College
  • Digicel

Email

events@apps.salcc.edu.lc


website

http://salcc.edu.lc/

Location


Date:

06 May

Time:

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM EASTERN TIME

OUR PRESENTERS AND PANELISTS

Meet our presenters and panelists!

Hon. Dr. Gale Rigobert

Minister of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development.

Professor Asha Kanwar

CEO/ President, Commonwealth of Learning

Camille Selvon-Abrahams

Founder and Director Animae Caribe Festival

Cathy James-Springer PH.D

Instructional Designer; Sir Arthur Lewis Community College

Sylvia Dohnert PH.D

Executive Director, Compete Caribbean

Nathallie Rochester

International Trade and Development Consultant

Germain Anthony

ICT Curriculum Officer, Ministry of Education, St. Lucia

Siobhan James-Alexander

CEO Digicel St.Lucia

Frank O'Carroll

Group Business Development Director, Digicel

John Reid

Former CEO, Cable & Wireless

E-Symposium Agenda

Browse our features and panels!

Welcome

Dr. Keith Nurse, Principal/ President, Sir Arthur Lewis Community College

Opening Remarks

Minister Rigobert has had a sterling career in academia and has long championed the goal of bridging the digital divide. The COVID 19 context proffers an opportunity to her ministry and the Government of Saint Lucia to play a leadership role.

Hon. Dr. Gale Rigobert, Minister of Education, Ministry of Education, Innovation, Gender Relations and Sustainable Development

FEATURE 1 - PROF. ASHA SINGH KANWAR

Prof. Kanwar is a global leader in the field of online learning through her work at the Commonwealth of Learning and as an independent scholar. The COL has championed growth in this area for decades and is well-positioned to help regional institutions embrace the E-learning paradigm.

Feature

  • Prof. Asha Singh Kanwar,
  • CEO/ President Commonwealth of Learning

FEATURE 2 – DR. DIDACUS JULES

Dr. Jules has a unique purview as OECS Secretary General and a long and distinguished career as an innovative scholar, policymaker and change agent in the area of educational development. He will share his perspective on the regional context, the wider socio-economic implications and the scope for transformation.

Feature

  • Dr. Didacus Jules
  • OECS Director General

PANEL 1 - ONLINE LEARNING VS EMERGENCY RESPONSE TEACHING AT THE TERTIARY LEVEL

For most education systems E-learning has arrived by default and instruction has become an emergency response. This has been the case at the tertiary level which is theoretically best positioned to make the transition most smoothly. How valid is this assessment? What has been the experience? How can we make the changes stick? This panel draws on the expertise of two seasoned educationalist to give some perspective on the performance of two regional tertiary education institutions.

Panelists

  • Dr. Claudette Fongkong-Mungal, University of the West Indies
  • Dr. Cathy-James Springer, Sir Arthur Lewis Community College

PANEL 2 - LEARNING IN THE DIGITAL PARADIGM – INITIATIVES AT PRIMARY AND SECONDARY LEVELS

The challenges of implementing a digital learning paradigm is particularly challenging at the primary and secondary levels. The digital divide is often even more pronounced and exacerbated by underlying structural inequalities. How do governments and ministries of education resolve these challenges and embrace the benefits of online learning? What support is required and what kind of teacher education upgrades are needed?

Panelists

  • Germain Anthony, ICT Curriculum Officer, Ministry of Education, St. Lucia
  • Rafer Gordon, Education Specialist,  EDMU, OECS

FEATURE 3 - DIGICEL: THE ROLE OF TELECOMMUNICATION PROVIDERS IN THE DIGITAL EDUCATION PARADIGM

Feature

  • Frank O’Carroll, Business Development Director, Digicel
  • Siobhan James-Alexander, Chief Executive officer, Digicel (St. Lucia) Ltd

PANEL 3 - GENERATING AND DISTRIBUTING CREATIVE CONTENT FOR E-LEARNING PLATFORMS

This panel grapples with the strategic opportunity of generating creative content for e-Learning platforms in the Caribbean region. The Caribbean is a net importer of educational materials and content. How can we address this imbalance in trade and build platforms for the production and dissemination of creative content? What are the intellectual property implications? The panelists are all accomplished educators, creative entrepreneurs and policy analysts and thus occupy a unique position on the matter.

Panelists

  • Natallie Rochester, Trade Policy specialist; Managing Director, Mango Tales Ltd.
  • Camille Selvon-Abrahams, Creative Director, Animae Caribe Animation Festival
  • Dr. Erica Smith, CEO, COSCAP; Executive Director, Intellect Management Services

PANEL 4 - TRANSFORMING SYSTEMS IN THE DIGITAL EDUCATION PARADIGM

A digital education system requires more than students, educators and learning institutions. Telecom providers, fintech solutions and creative entrepreneurship are critical elements in the digital education paradigm. The focus of this panel is on discussing the requirements for transformation of systems given the demands of the digital education paradigm in the Caribbean context. The distinguished panelists are asked to offer a critical eye on the realities and possibilities of upgrading the digital education capabilities to achieve regional relevance and global competence.

Panelists

  • Gordon Williams, Goodwill Ambassador to St. Lucia/CEO Lalabela ent.
  • John Reid, Former CEO, Cable and Wireless Communications
  • Sylvia Donhert de Lascurain, Executive Director, Compete Caribbean

Closing remarks

Dr. Keith Nurse, Principal/ President Sir Arthur Lewis Community College

Vote of Thanks

Mrs. Tracy Pilgrim George, Sir Arthur Lewis Community College.