Press Release

Premier's Office
Release Date:
Tuesday, 12 July 2016 - 3:34pm

Premier and Minister of Finance, Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE, has said that all students in the region, at every level, should have an opportunity and the skills to reach their full potential.

Premier Smith while addressing the Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT) Executive Meeting held on Tuesday, July 12, said the students must also be able to contribute to the social and economic development of their Caribbean homes.

The Honourable Premier stated, “It requires that we all continue to work together and move in the same direction so that all of our children and our people remain knowledgeable, pioneering, and creative in this world where education drives sustainability.”

Premier Smith said the future of education in the Caribbean promises to be exciting and he commended the teachers for their work in helping to shape future generations of Caribbean leaders.

The Premier added, “The responsibility is therefore in our hands to build capacity, ensure high competency skills and sustainability among those living, working and residing in the Caribbean. We owe it to the Caribbean youth to facilitate the very best education system, in order for them to remain competitive and relevant in the wider market.”

Premier Smith’s address to the gathering of CUT members comes ahead of the 16th Biennial CUT Track and Field Championship being hosted on Friday, July 15 and Saturday, July 16 at the A. O. Shirley Recreation Grounds.

The Caribbean Union of Teachers is 79 years old. The union came into being on August 21, 1935 at its inaugural meeting in Trinidad and Tobago as the West Indies Teachers’ Association. The CUT has always reflected and symbolised the spirit of Caribbean unity, which mirrors the historical and cultural experiences of the region.

 The CUT Track and Field Championships is as a result of the CUT's recognition of the need to provide young athletes ages eight to 15 with some regional competition. There was also recognition by the CUT that sports have a significant role to play in the regional integration process.

These particular Championships bring together the students and teachers of the Caribbean for a few days of friendly competition, camaraderie and co-operation. The Caribbean Union of Teachers Biennial Track and Field Championships was first organised in Barbados in 1986.