Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Preparing to be quizzed!

Briefing the Hon. Minister: Acting Director of the Education Standards and Assessment Unit, Mrs Mary Bowerman, along with the Chief Education Officer, Mrs Shirley Wahler. (Missing from photo again - me)
One of the interesting parts of this job in the Cayman Islands is the debate and discussion process as we plan for future developments and plans within the education transformation process.

A key part of the process is supporting the Hon. Minister during the annual Finance Committee which takes place in the Legislative Assembly. This is the opportunity that the Opposition and other elected members have to quiz the Minister on spending plans for the next financial year. Questions are obviously not known in advance, but the Hon. Minister always try to give full detailed and instant answers, or for more technical information he reverts to one of us in the senior team that supports him. A key part of preparation is fully briefing the Hon. Minister before hand.

It is actually quite exciting and the adrenalin flows as the process takes place and the questions fly. We try to predict areas of questioning - and there is a certain pleasure when we 'get it right!'. How long does it last?.... well it is up to elected members - it may be an hour it may be a couple of days, or more. No one questions that education is important, but the challenges are very varied, real politics are played between the Opposition and the Government, as we mention past performance and explain the exciting plans for the future.

(That does make it hard to plan a diary however - we have been on 'standby' for a week already.)
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