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An English language institute will be set up at the Community College.
An English language institute will be set up at the Community College.
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Two hundred Ecuadorian teachers are expected to arrive here in January to learn English as a second language, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves announced at a press conference on Monday.

“We have now a memorandum being worked out. I advise that we set up an institute for the teaching of English language within the framework of the Community College,” Gonsalves said.

He explained that the Community College, the country’s main post-secondary institution, is entering on behalf of the government an agreement with the relevant authorities in Ecuador.

“A team has come here already from Ecuador, communications is going on, and come January, we are going to have 200 Ecuadorian teachers. We are calling it — the programme — Go Teacher. That is the programme, through our English language institute,” Gonsalves said.

“They are going to pay us; we are working out the final price to teach them. That is for the Community College to earn some money. They are sending their teachers at the moment to Kansas in the US. They send to St. Vincent. Hopefully, they will send to Dominica too, another ALBA countries. Ecuador is a member of ALBA. They will get it cheaper from us, they will get good quality from us,” Gonsalves said.

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He said his government is working with the University of West Indies not only for our domestic accreditation but also but “to get the imprimatur too from the University of the West Indies”.

He said Ecuador is planning to send 400 teachers in September 2015.

“It’s a seven-month programme. They need houses to stay in, apartments, and I am glad, we get a little breathing space so we can put in place measure not just for the teaching but for the housing.”

Gonsalves said Cabinet has agreed in principle to provide concession for persons who want to put on rooms for students and other visitors, or who want to expand or improve their guesthouses, or build apartments.

“Under the law currently, if you build five rooms and you have to provide a common eating area under the current law to get the concessions. One of the things we are going to put in place — and you are going to hear the specific things after next week’s Cabinet — you don’t have to build a common eating area.

“You can have the rooms self-contained with a kitchenette. That is how visitors, students especially, like it, and you will get the concessions. I want to drop the number from five…” Gonsalves said.

He noted that there are already 700 medical students.

“This is an industry which can bring us more money than bananas brought us in the heyday. It wouldn’t have the wide base as bananas had, but in terms of the dollars, the knock on effect and so forth,” Gonsalves said.

12 replies on “SVG to teach Ecuadorian teachers English”

  1. How on earth are we going to teach teachers English. Even the most educated in SVG make drastic mistakes in pronouniation, and that includes Ralph Gonsalves.

    The only man who I have listened to over the years who has a wonderful and almost perfect command of the language is Bertram Commissiong, I have seen him correct others when talking with them.

  2. What a joke! Most Vincentians can barely speak proper English. Most have very poor reading and comprehension skills, not to mention inadequate reasoning abilities. And don’t even mention spelling and grammar, as seen in most postings here. And all this from persons who have gone to school for years.

    The Venezuelans have nothing to learn from us dunces!

    1. @ C.ben- David …”The Venezuelans have nothing to learn from us dunces!”
      What say you, what really say you?
      Listen C.ben-David go and chill out with your Canadian Vincentian wife, and maybe help her to wipe her backside with that Canadian passport and not the Vincy one, which is not for that purpose.
      For one word spoken a man is often time known to be wise, and for one word spoken is often time known to be a fool, therefore we ought to be careful of what we say!
      Who is the dunce here?


        THIS CREATURE, to use SVLP Political Leader MILTON CATO’S choice expression, OWE Mr. C. ben-DAVID, and the readership of I-WITNESS NEWS a PUBLIC APOLOGY.

        Doesn’t the site have RULES OF ETHICS AND DECORUM where posters are not allowed to CURSE THE FAMILY MEMBERS, SPOUSES AND CHILDREN, mother and father, et al, of fellow posters/bloggers?

        EVEN THE POLITICAL DECREPIT “Com-RED” says that IF you ‘cuss or libel/slander his family, his mother or wife, then HE WILL SUE YOU.

        SHOW SOME COMMON DECENCY false ‘vinciman’ – – – MADE ALL THE MORE PUNIER BY YOUR UNTOWARD “dutty” castigation of an ADMITTEDLY VINCENTIAN WOMAN who aint trouble or interfer with you. Sometimes, I tend to favour the re-introduction of our traditional BULL-PISTLE.

        SHAME ON YOU, political nasty. It was undeniably A WUTLISS COMMENT AND UNETHICAL ATTACK on the lady.

  3. This is good news. I believe that transforming ourselves into an education hub and an information economy is a sustainable way to go. The more students the better. The more academics the better. Great for foreign exchange and great for circulation of money in the local economy. There is a reason why the research triangle in North Carolina USA consisting of Raleigh Durham, Cary and Chapel Hill do so well as an economy. They attract students and researchers. The more complex the world gets, the more valuable education and information becomes. Furthermore, where you have an education hub this can easily diversify into a development hub (did I hear someone say Silicon Valley?).

    The teaching of English is small potatoes and we do need to look into the various ways of how we can market ourselves as an information and education economy. Our lack of natural resources does not curse us to an eternity of poverty. There are countries with relatively little natural resources and they are doing quite well (did I hear someone say Singapore? Bahamas?)

    There are so many other ways to make money as a country. There is too much of a hyperfocus on agriculture, I think. Our only focus on agriculture should be to make ourselves as self sufficient in food as we can possibly be. The future is information and education. Let’s get with it. This is a decent start.

  4. Ayo Hear Strupidness. You mean after the school went to Grenada this is what we have now?
    Fella let me explain something, this is not a game, people lost thier entire life savings some of them when the school left because of politics. Do you think people are willing to trust this thing?

    This is not a joke or pieces on a game board these are real people’s lives that are being played with SVG really need some serious help.

  5. To follow up on what I said earlier, this is what is being done in Iskandar, Malaysia:

    “Iskandar is a special economic zone in the Malaysia state of Johor, bordering Singapore. The project is administered by Iskandar. Regional Development Authority, and consists of five “flagship zones” devoted to various development projects. Zone B includes an education city and a medical hub. The University of Newcastle (UK) has established a medical school in Iskandar, enrolling its first class in fall 2011. Raffles Education Corporation, a private education provider in South East Asia, is investing in the site and is pursuing development of Raffles University-Iskandar. The explicit attraction of a large space on the outskirts of Singapore reflects the competitive environment for education hubs in the region.”

    Of course we can’t pretend to be Malaysia or Singapore but we can develop a prototype for an education and knowledge hub that is appropriate for our own peculair circumstances in SVG.

    Food for thought, perhaps the soon to be deserted space in Arnos Vale could be dedicated to the creation of some sort of education hub. Likewise we can do the same with Mt. Wynne. I can understand why no one wants to invest the money to put some kind of luxury hotel down there. Now if you attract the facilities for a knowledge hub there (and there is the space for it) there will really be no need to go begging for investment in a luxury hotel. And people will have a reason to go there. They go there for study, research, and development. Let’s think outside of the box. Its an economic structure that is also more inclusive for us locals than luxury hotels, who deep in the hearts of their owners don’t have much use for black people.

  6. Poor me COUNTRY BUUKIE Vincie, me ‘neber be know JACK-MATHEMATICS – – – that 200 or 400 ALBA Ecuadorian teachers coming to learn English as a Second Language (ESL) in St.Vincent for nine (9) months per year or on a rolling basis WOULD EVER BE ABLE TO BRING US IN SVG MORE MONEY THAN wutliss BANANAS EVER DID BRING IN TO US IN ITS VERY HEYDAY.


    Certifiably MAD.

    The ole man Duvalier-esque PAPADOC really, really loosing it these days.

    Suddenly so, after suffering we fuh THIRTEEN LONG WASTED YEARS – – – NOW we getting everything from the LENINIST COMMIE.


    Are they going to help in ANY WAY in the upcoming SOON DUE SVG GENERAL ELECTIONS?

    HAVE we ALREADY COMPLETED teaching the COMMUNIST CUBAN MILITARY PERSONNEL IN SVG – – – the “Guardias”, etc., etc., hanging out at the Argyle airport project ANY ENGLISH LANGUAGE TRAINING?

    WHAT THE HELL ARE WE HEARING ABOUT “400 hundred Ecuadorians in SEPTEMBER 2015” for ???


    What are the marxist-leninist tactics and strategies connected with this SUDDEN alba DEVICE OF OUR COPY-CAT “call me comrade, too, nuh” DUPLICITOUS ONE?!


    Time to GO, joker.


    The doctrinaire ideologue seems to be TOTALLY OFF HIS ROCKER.

    He dun LOOSE ALL HE MARBLES . . .

    poor, poor COM-RED.

  7. @ Watching Hard…Well said! But who is listening? Not these clowns. Maybe you should try the Vincentian or Searchlight newspapers, I’m sure what you wrote will resonate much better there. Moreover, Kenton should close comments on certain post like he did back in the early days of IWN. These malicious clowning comments that are posted here in reference to this industrious educational program, sends a bad signal to foreign readership…those we could do without.

  8. Now I don’t know if Gonsalves […] doesn’t know that there are thousands of empty rooms and apartments all over the island. Built for medical students […].

    The owners are in many cases in trouble with the banks trying to pay off loans. Now he comes along and tries to encourage people to build more. I must ask this question “is it he that is stupid for making such statements, or us for listening and reading such crap”.

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