Finding God’s light in darkness
June 26, 2024
June 26, 2024

Registration of migrant children begins

The Catholic Education Board of Management (CEBM) is “happy” with the official announcement that parents of Venezuelan migrant children can begin registering their children for school from Tuesday, June 25.

RC schools are involved in the first phase of the introduction of migrant children into the school system for the academic year 2024-2025, starting in September.

Contacted for comment on the Ministry of Education’s (MoE) announcement via media release on June 21, Chief Executive Officer of the CEBM Sharon Mangroo said, “We have worked with our schools for several years, our teachers are ready, we provided training through efforts of the Education Working Group (EWG), we have provided resources, our teachers are ready and willing to accept the children into the schools”.

The CEBM is a member of the EWG, which according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, seeks to “identify opportunities for the delivery of education services to migrant children in Trinidad and Tobago.”  The EWG is supported by the Education Ministry, Living Water Community, Pan American Development Foundation, the United Nations Children’s Fund, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Mangroo said the CEBM will continue working with the MoE “so this implementation process will be a smooth one”.

She acknowledged the concerns of parents and other stakeholders and assured the CEBM will, along with the Ministry, provide all the support they can to address these concerns. “To make the stay in our schools one that is comfortable and productive,” Mangroo added.

The Ministry issued a release stating, “parents are required to visit the Education District Office (Tuesdays and Thursdays only) closest to their place of residence to complete and sign the application form ‘Application for Admission of Migrants of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela into Schools’. They are required to have the following documents, original and one copy: Minister’s Permit under the MRF [Migrant Registration Framework] and Migrant Registration Card (Children whose parents are not in possession of the Minister’s Permit under the MRF are ineligible to apply for entry into schools); certified translation of birth certificate of child; Immunisation Record of child; proof of address (letter from landlord with copy of a recent utility bill as verification of address must be presented); and passport-sized photo of the child.”

There were two caveats to this announcement: parents must obtain a Student Permit Exemption from the Ministry of National Security and application did not guarantee placement; this is dependent on availability of space at schools. –LPG