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– Allied Arts AdministratorIn light of the need for more teachers of the Arts, Administrator of the Ministry of Education’s Allied Arts Unit, Ms Desiree Wyles-Ogle, is advocating for more teachers and by extension more students, to gravitate towards subject areas that constitute the Arts.However, Wyles-Ogle during an interview with this publication recently disclosed that there are some teachers and even parents who are convinced that participation in the Arts could take away academics.“They don’t see it as enhancing the academics, but if you do literacy and drama you have to read and you have to read with understanding so that you can interpret, thereby it automatically enhances reading, literacy and one’s memory,” said Wyles-Ogle.Currently, forms of expressive arts available to secondary school students are Visual Arts, Dance, Drama, Music and Physical Education. And according to Wyles-Ogle, of the 101 secondary schools across the country, there are only 39 with Allied Arts Departments.A school is able to establish an Allied Arts Department if at least three of the Expressive Arts subject areas are offered.This year a total of 988 students from 25 schools undertook Physical Education at the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) level. These students, according to Wyles-Ogle, were prepared by teachers with some expertise, although there is currently not a full complement of teachers.But despite the need for advocacy to encourage the Arts, Wyles-Ogle noted that Theatre Arts, which is offered by the Caribbean Examinations Council, has been proving to be an asset,NFL Jerseys From China, since it complements the Allied Arts (various forms of the art).  Moreover, through the Allied Arts Unit, about 25 teaches have been trained in Theatre Arts.However, the need for more teachers of the Arts continues to be crucial, as according to Wyles-Ogle, “the Arts subject areas are extremely important in relation to having a balanced curriculum and a balanced education.”Wyles-Ogle stated that while the mainstream academic areas are very important, research has shown that exposure to the Arts and physical activities are known to enhance children’s physical, intellectual, social and emotional development.“There is no better way to do it than in the Arts, because when you are doing the Arts you are involved in all the various aspects of development and so I feel it is very important.”As such, Wyles-Ogle has been amplifying her belief that the Arts must be nurtured in the school system.“We need to nurture creativity, because it wouldn’t come just like that, you have to train and give students the opportunities where they could be involved in activities to develop that creative aspect,” she asserted.And this has been the ongoing mission of the Allied Arts Unit, said Wyles-Ogle, who noted that “I am proud to say that over the years a lot of these students that take part in the Arts display a lot of self confidence and heightened self esteem.”She disclosed that a few years ago it was students of the Sophia Special School, who, because of their creative talents, were tasked with representing Guyana at the Caribbean Festival of Arts on two occasions.“I have seen tremendous improvements in those children…the way they deliver themselves; the confidence they have after participating in these kinds of activities…and research has shown that children who feel good about themselves tend to do well academically too.”Wyles-Ogle had also disclosed plans for the Eighth Secondary Schools Drama Festival which is scheduled to commence today at the Theatre Guild, Parade Street, Georgetown.The biennial event will last for two days and will allow students from across the country to showcase their various dramatic talents. It will also set the stage for the participants from one school to represent Guyana at the Caribbean Secondary Schools’ Drama Festival. The Caribbean Festival is slated for later this year in Barbados.And from among the outstanding entries of the Secondary School Festival, a few will be selected to participate in the National Drama Festival which is organised by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport.

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