Seychelles signs contract with UK company to help students improve reading
The contract was signed by Minister Jeanne Simeon (second from left) and the Renaissance International Partnership Director Vice President, Peter Schneider. (Ministry for Education and Human Resource Development)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychelles has signed a contract with Renaissance, a global leader in pre-K to 12 education technology, for a three-year programme to improve student attainment in English reading in all primary schools, said the Ministry of Education.
In a press communique on Thursday, the Ministry said the contract was signed during a presentation organised by Renaissance in London on the sidelines of the 20th conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers under the auspices of the Education World Forum.
The expanded implementation programme follows a successful trial in five schools in Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, last year. During the trial, the ministry said it saw significant increases in reading among 500 primary school students.
The Ministry did not say how much the new contract is valued at.
Chris Bauleke, the CEO of Renaissance said, "We are delighted to have the opportunity to partner with the Seychelles Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development to improve literacy for their students," at the signing ceremony.
"The trial we undertook in 2019 allowed us to demonstrate the value our solutions deliver and we look forward to working with administrators, teachers, parents and students to truly embed and foster a culture of reading across the Seychelles," he added.
On her side, the Seychelles' Minister for Education and Human Resource Development, Jeanne Simeon, said, "From planning the original pilot to committing to a full three-year project, we always had confidence that Renaissance had our children's best interest at heart."
Simeon said that the Renaissance ability "to understand our needs and practically apply their knowledge and experience in our schools enabled us to gain maximum benefit from the reading programme during the successful pilot."
Seychellois children have specific needs in order to reach their full potential, but through the strong and trusted relationship "we have built with Renaissance, we are confident that the wider objectives of the full project will be met," she added.
Utilising Renaissance's award-winning Star Assessments, Accelerated Reader, and myON products, the programme will increase the availability of books written in English and provide teachers the tools, resources and support to embed and teach literacy across the curriculum.
By increasing access to high quality engaging texts, this programme is designed to improve the culture of reading, as reading for pleasure is associated with many additional benefits beyond academic achievement.
As part of this partnership, Renaissance will provide Seychelles with in-country support and training throughout the duration of the programme to build knowledge and confidence.
Founded in 1986, Renaissance is committed to accelerating learning for individuals of all ages and ability levels. Today, the company helps educators accelerate growth for more than 18.5 million learners in 52,000 schools.