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Student Exchanges with French Territories



cssBasseterre, St. Kitts, (Tuesday 26th June, 2012)-Back in the decades of the 1970s and 80s hundreds of high school students from Guadeloupe and St. Kitts and Nevis were engaged in what was an annual exchange that was  organized as part of a cultural program designed to share cultural values and lifestyles.

Though the program eventually waned, a new effort could soon be made if the premier of Nevis, Joseph Parry, has his way. Parry was recently quoted as saying that he met in Paris with the French ambassador who holds responsibility for Regional Cooperation for the Caribbean. Parry was on his way home from a meeting in Switzerland promoting the Citizenship by Investment Program of the Federal Government.

In his capacity as Premier and Minister of Education in the Nevis Island administration, Parry said his mission in France, on Monday 18th June, was not only focused on education but also agriculture, geothermal exploration and culture. Nevis he said is hoping to forge closer relations with the nearby French overseas Departments of Martinique and Guadeloupe.parry

He explained that it was important that Nevisian students learn to speak French and for the teachers to be able to teach the language. He noted that this used to happen in the past but it stopped. 

“But we want to go further than that,” said the Premier. “I have been informed that there are two universities in Guadeloupe offering tuition at US$300 a year, in addition to that you just have to find board and lodging. That is much cheaper than any other university in the Caribbean, including the University of the West Indies.”

He however advised that the universities in Guadeloupe are not offering scholarships, but his government is not asking for scholarships, saying it is only looking for the openings.

The premier is hoping that a Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation in a number of areas could soon be signed with the French. 

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