According to the Minister of Education, The Bahamas has reached a critical juncture in its development as the structural transformations of the Bahamian economy place the nation at the threshold of a paradigm shift, first into an information-based society and then beyond, to a knowledge-based society.
Launching the Ministry’s new web site, the Hon. Alfred M. Sears, M.P., Attorney General and Minister of Education acknowledges that a new education era has been entered into in The Bahamas — with the adoption of a market sensitive approach to the formulation of educational programmes and the establishment of standards.
The Website is described as a carefully planned response to global change and development. Content establishes a closer link between the geographically diverse Islands of The Bahamas, facilitates research and information gathering, and provides access to information which will allow Bahamians to take full advantage of the opportunities offered by an increasingly borderless world.
In his message appearing on the new site, Minister Sears said, *”The challenge of globalisation is being met not only by changing the content of curriculum and programmes, but more importantly, the delivery systems. Information Technology enhanced teaching and learning are already making computers in schools, distance learning, video conferencing and Internet link commonplace.”* As such, he said, The Bahamas is forging ahead to achieve a significant transformation of its educational infrastructure in order to become a “fully technologically competent and scientifically adept society in this 21st century”.
The Ministry of Education is presently in Phase 2 of its Computerisation Project which will link schools in the Family Islands to those in New Providence. Eventually, all classrooms in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas will be linked to classrooms around the world. By building a world-class system that is flexible and innovative, the Ministry of Education hopes to create a regional educational hub and a centre for educational excellence.
Earlier this week, the Registrar General’s Department launched its Registered Agent Information System, effectively allowing online registration and other services for international business companies.
In a presentation to BFSB’s E-Commerce Symposium earlier this week, IBM (Bahamas) Limited, said e-government contributes to national development through increased effectiveness of social services; means to accountability; means to greater public access of information; means to a more transparent government; a market for information technology solutions; and increased citizen participation in regulatory processes.
IBM, consultants on the e-government project, points out that we must focus on e-government as we live in a “web of information interdependency” and that countries worldwide are modernising their Governments at a faster pace. The ultimate goal is to create an integrated and secure government able to deliver services *24×7* to citizens (G2C), businesses (G2B), other government departments (G2G) and employees (G2E).