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Thanks to Seychelles President for leading role in early childhood care and education transformation



Dr Mmantsetsa Marope, director of the IBE-UNESCO, yesterday called on President Danny Faure at State House.

She told the press after the meeting that the main purpose of her courtesy call on President Faure was to thank him in three main areas:  First for his enduring leadership and resolve to lead the transformation of early childhood care and education in the world and in Seychelles; secondly for the formal recognition of Seychelles as a ‘best practice hub’ for ECCE and thirdly for Seychelles’ voluntary contribution towards IBE-UNESCO to leverage other countries so it can carry out its technical works.

Dr Marope was accompanied on her visit to State House by Jeanne Simeon, deputy Cabinet Secretary and Shirley Choppy, chief executive of the Institute of Early Childhood Development (IECD).

Dr Marope is in Seychelles as the prominent speaker among other renowned ones at the first International Biennial Conference on Early Childhood Care and Education which was officially opened yesterday evening at the Eden Bleu Hotel.

“First of all I want to thank the president for his enduring leadership and his resolve to lead the transformation of early childhood care and education in the world and in Seychelles. I want to underscore the world because as you may be aware the president, who was vice-president at the time, has been quite central to the global dialogue on the development of early childhood care education  since 2010 when he was at the world congress on early childhood care  and education,” she said.

According to Dr Marope, the president understands the fundamental importance of early childhood care and education as a foundation for human development, which is a foundation for overall development.

Early childhood development, she said,  is driven by human resources that are knowledgeable, have the right disposition, are knowledgeable-savvy and have the ability to apply all this knowledge, skills and attitudes to drive the development of a country forward – economically, politically, socially, ethically, morally – to enable development realistically.

“This is the leadership the president has played over the years globally, and that the Seychellois need to be aware of. I know he is your president, but we feel very strongly he is our president on the global stage when he plays his role,” said Dr Marope.

Secondly, Dr Marope said, is the fact that President Faure’s leadership in Seychelles radiated out in the process of last evening’s conference where a memorandum of understanding was signed between Seychelles and the International Bureau of Education (IBE) of Unesco to formally recognise Seychelles as a ‘best practice hub’ for ECCE.

“This would never have been possible without the resolve of a very dedicated, committed, unflinching leadership of the president,” said Dr Marope.

She also remarked that by becoming a ‘best practice hub’, Seychelles is giving support to other countries that are trying to build their early childhood care education systems.

There are 18 countries at the conference with about 12 of them here to learn from Seychelles. The others are there to augment the learning from Seychelles to bring best practices.

“So the global leadership role the president is playing is moving from the visionary inspirational role to the practical, and this is how you do it. Because I’ve done it in Seychelles and this is how it can be done,” she explained. And to be the ‘best practice hub’, she said, means that Seychelles is going to play this very fundamentally crucial role at a very critical moment in our history of humanity.

“The third reason I came to thank President Faure for is the fact that you may be aware recently Seychelles provided what is called ‘voluntary contribution’ to the IBE a total sum of US $300,000 to be disbursed in annual trenches of US $100,000 per year to facilitate the IBE to do its work.

“And this is again the president taking a global leadership role but also enabling us to leverage other countries, the private sector and foundations and mobilise resources so that we can continue to provide the technical support that we are providing,” said Dr Marope.

She said when IBE is seen on the internet and on the work they are doing, Seychellois should feel very proud as Seychelles contributed financially, intellectually and that countries are coming to learn from us.
Dr Marope clarified even if Seychelles is small in size compared to other countries, it is the enablers making the country achieve progress that serve as examples to others.
Read the article: The Seychelles Nation

Live updates and expert commentary from the conference will be shared via Dr. Marope and IBE-UNESCO’s Twitter accounts: @IBE_UNESCO and @m_marope, as well as Facebook: @IBEUNESCO.

Please also read our blog In-Progress Reflections: 
Content, comprehensiveness and coherence in policies for early childhood: how the curriculum can contribute.

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If you are interested in learning more about the IBE-UNESCO’s work on ECCE, how to become a best practice hub or want to share your challenges or successes, please contact us.