Twenty-three art teachers from public and private schools across the island graduated on December 3rd, after completing a three-month art teaching certification course.
The course, a release said, was sponsored by the Halo Foundation and the Jumby Bay Fund, in conjunction with the Royal Drawing School (United Kingdom), the Ministry of Education and The G (art gallery in Piccadilly). Local artist counterpart, Anson Henry, also assisted with the programme. Two separate graduation ceremonies were held, in order to restrict numbers at the gathering.
While delivering brief remarks at the ceremony, Her Excellency Sandra Lady Williams remarked that “the curriculum was developed based on a needs assessment exercise carried out through surveys of the teachers throughout the school system, with the assistance of Director of Art in the Ministry of Education, Mr. Melville Richardson. These techniques will be transferred to the ultimate beneficiaries of the exercise — the students in primary, secondary and tertiary institutions in Antigua and Barbuda. Initially, we also received a significant amount of crucial advice from local artist Dina De Brozzi Goodenough and International Networks Manager of the Prince’s Foundation, Mr Jeremy Cross, so all ideas were combined, and culminated in a tailored, practical plan of action”.
CEO of the Jumby Bay Island Company Ltd, Mr Wayne Kafcsak, spoke of the commitment of Jumby Bay to the overall development of the island, and commended the Halo Foundation for the continuous initiatives to provide a platform for sharing of skills and improvement of techniques in the area of culture and the arts.
Governor General, His Excellency Sir Rodney Williams stated that “with continuous development courses such as this, the expectation is that the level of art in our schools will improve. We already have a tremendous amount of local talent. Like with any other discipline, keeping abreast of new techniques and communicating views and visions can only refine the quality of output”.
Deputy Director of Education, Mrs. Ezra Jonah-Greene, distributed the certificates on behalf of the Ministry of Education, Sports and Creative Industries.
Tutors from the Royal Drawing School, Cherry Pickles and Oliver MacDonald Oulds, expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the programme, which was recommended for future expansion. Both tutors will return to London next week.
The Royal Drawing School “runs over 350 different full and part time drawing courses each year for adults and children of all ages and abilities. [Their] courses are taught by a specialist faculty of over 75 practising artists. Founded in 2000 by HRH The Prince of Wales and artist Catherine Goodman as The Prince’s Drawing School, [it] became the Royal Drawing School in 2014.” (www.royaldrawingschool.org).
For further information, contact The Halo Foundation (562-9153), or email [email protected].