Education in Saint Lucia
Saint Lucia is a member of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and as such is being supported by GPE alongside Dominica, Grenada and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
The OECS recognizes the importance of improving the quality of education as part of the solution to improving social and economic development in the region.
On average, OECS countries spend over 17% of the national budget on education and between 5-7% of GDP.
The OECS countries have made good progress in access to basic education which is expanded to universal levels with some countries implementing universal early childhood education, but some challenges remain with regard to access, equity, and quality.
The overarching goal of education outlined in the 2012-2021 OECS Education Sector Strategy (OESS) is to contribute to the socio-economic advancement of the OECS through a quality education system that enables learners of all ages to reach their true potential.
The OESS is results-oriented, focuses on learning outcomes, and provides a strategic approach aimed at strengthening leadership, management, and accountability systems within the education sectors in the region.
The OESS outlines seven objectives:
- Improve the quality and accountability of leadership and management by:
- Establishing professional development programs for school leaders across the region
- Strengthening accountability, knowledge management, and legal frameworks within which school leaders operate.
- Improve teachers’ professional development by:
- Recruiting and retaining qualified teachers and teacher trainers/educators
- Improving teacher management
- Increasing the number of qualified teachers operating within their field of expertise across schools in the OECS.
- Improve the quality of teaching and learning by:
- Providing different approaches that engage learners in creative learning experiences
- Improving achievement for all learners and ensure that they acquire the core competencies in the areas of literacy, numeracy, and technology.
- Improve curriculum and strategies for assessment by:
- Providing students with access to curricula that is based on defined learning outcomes
- Increasing students’ engagement and achievements, with levels of attainment matching international benchmarks
- Developing a regional education and skills strategy that meets the needs of individuals, communities, and employers in the 21st century context.
- Increase and expand access to quality early childhood development services by:
- Improving the quality of early childhood development services to meet the needs of children from birth to age five, including the most vulnerable
- Increasing funding for early childhood education programs by developing and implementing a strategy that encourages public-private partnerships
- Strengthening inter-sector, parent, and community collaboration and partnerships.
- Provide opportunities for all learners in technical and vocational education and training by:
- Providing introductory technical and vocational training for primary school students
- Creating a qualification framework that enables learners to move seamlessly between vocational and academic qualifications.
- Increase provision for tertiary and continuing education by:
- Improving funding mechanisms for tertiary and continuing education institutions across the OECS
- Improving governance systems and processes
- Improving the quality of programs and research offered by tertiary and continuing education institutions.
Also, the OESS covers the following cross-cutting themes: improving achievement levels in the core subjects of literacy, numeracy and technology; strengthening boys’ education; achieving equality of access to the marginalized and economically disadvantaged; strengthening disaster risk reduction and management measures; establishing effective knowledge management systems; and integrating technology in the classroom.
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The main objectives of the US$2 million GPE grant are to:
- Use quality learning standards to support evidence-based teaching and learning at the primary level by:
- Reviewing the harmonized curriculum to clarify grade-level learning standards for primary education in literacy, numeracy, science, and social studies.
- Developing a learner-centered assessment framework to monitor the achievement of learning standards.
- Developing and implementing guidelines for using the learning standards and formative classroom assessment.
- Improve teacher practices at the primary level by:
- Reviewing the teacher training programs in member countries.
- Reviewing classroom practices in member countries to understand current practices and identify capacity gaps.
- Developing a teacher professional development course and school-based professional learning communities to improve classroom practices.
- Carrying out competence-based professional development activities for teachers in the member countries.
- Establishing an online community of practice for teachers to access online instructional resources and share lesson plans and experiences.
- Strengthen primary school leadership and accountability by:
- Developing a school leader training program based on professional standards.
- Carrying out competence-based training and certification activities for school leaders.
- Developing a handbook for school principals/leaders to guide school leadership and management.
- Initiate the strengthening of sector monitoring & evaluation capacity by:
- Process monitoring of the teachers and school leader professionals development activities.
- Establishment of national routines for ongoing monitoring of learning standards and assessment using available data and additional research.
- Monitoring of teacher classroom practices through the use of the classroom assessment scoring system.
- Carrying out annual regional and country-level program reviews.
The World Bank acted as grant agent for both grants.
The Organization of Eastern Caribbean States Commission received a US$298,500 Education Sector Plan Development Grant to finalize and appraise the OESS and a US$316,000 Program Development Grant to develop a multi-country program implementation grant application in 2014. The World Bank acted as grant agent for both grants.
All amounts are in US dollars.
|Grant type||Years||Allocations||Disbursements||Grant agent|
|Program implementation||2016-2019||2,000,000||1,962,560||World Bank||Progress report|
|Sector plan development||2018-2020||450,150||450,150||World Bank|
|Program development||2015-2016||314,840||316,000||World Bank|
*These grants were allocated to the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States to be shared among Dominica, Grenada, Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.
Education sector progress
The graphs below show overall progress in the education sector in Saint Lucia, and GPE data shows the country progress on 16 indicators monitored in the GPE Results Framework.
Primary Completion Rate (%)
Lower secondary completion rate
Out-of-school rate for children of primary school age
Out-of-school rate for adolescents of lower secondary school age
Pre-primary gross enrollment rate
Gender parity index for out-of-school rate – Primary and lower secondary
Public Expenditure on Education as Share of GDP (%)
Students/trained teacher ratio
Teachers Trained (%)
Source: World Bank - Education Data
Data on education are compiled by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics from official responses to surveys and from reports provided by education authorities in each country.