Guyana gets US$5M grant to boost human capital to handle oil-driven growth

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Guyana’s Ministry of Education has been awarded a US$5M grant from the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) to boost its human capital development efforts. The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is the designated manager for the disbursements which will occur in the fourth quarter of 2023. The funds are intended to promote equitable learning across various institutions in the country by strengthening the capacity of educators to be culturally responsive and effective in their instructional leadership. It is expected to benefit 10 Regional Education District Officers (RDEOs), several officials at the Ministry of Education, and 445 primary and 116 secondary school leaders.

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Based on the results of the Education Sector Analysis conducted by the Ministry of Education, the Guyana Education Sector Plan 2021-2025, as well as the Enabling Factor Analysis (EFA), it was confirmed that access to education in Guyana is unequal at primary and secondary, and low in secondary education.

The ministry’s data from 2017 show for example that children in the Hinterland Regions of 1, 8, and 9 have some of the highest out-of school rates, with 2.8%, 5.8%, and 1.3% respectively. In 2019, it was found that the completion rate for secondary school was 41.4% for males and 57.3% for females.

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To address such inequalities, the government’s Education Sector Programme 2021-2025 concluded that strengthened district and school leadership is urgently needed. The IDB agreed, noting that the US$5 million would not only go a far way in helping to achieve equitable outcomes but also enable Guyana to ensure all its people can take advantage of the opportunities flowing from oil-driven growth.

Over the last seven years, Guyana has experienced rapid economic growth and transformation, with its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita increasing from US$6,600 in 2019 to US$9,778 in 2021. In 2022, GDP grew by 57.8% and it is expected to continue growing at an average of 25% between 2023 and 2026.

This economic transformation has allowed the government to plan as well as implement long-needed investments in its education sector, thus increasing its prospects of sustainable economic growth and diversification.

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