Matelot Innovative Community Open School launch event in Matelot, Trinidad. From left to right: Justice Annestine Sealey, Tullia Ible, Fadwa Wadi, N'kisha Marcelle, Sharon Mangroo, Lystra Sampson Ovid

The Catholic Education Board of Management (CEBM), Caribbean Fisheries Training and Development Institute (CFTDI) and Commonwealth of Learning (COL) have launched an open school that will focus on practical skills training for students in Matelot, Trinidad. The Matelot Innovative Community Open School, which officially opened 13 November 2015, targets young people who have dropped out of school for training and certification in boat engine repairs, fish handling/processing and net mending.

Courses and training were developed following consultations with Matelot residents that showed an interest in fields related to the fishing industry, said COL education consultant Lystra Sampson-Ovid. Students will follow CFTDI curriculum tailored to meet their specific learning needs. The open school also has the support of the local community with local fishers acting as student mentors with the support of CFTDI instructors. The growth of fisheries has been identified by the Trinidad and Tobago government as a way to help diversify the local economy.