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DR to expand early childhood education with IDB support

The Inter-American Development Bank has announced the approval of a US$200 million loan to the Dominican government to expand early childhood development services for the country’s poorest population groups.

It also is intended to strengthen management capacities at INAIPI, the National Institute for Comprehensive Early Childhood Care. The government recently appointed the widow of former Santo Domingo East Mayor Juan de los Santos, Berlinesa Franco to head Inaipi. The appointment has been criticized because Franco is not known for her experience in the early childhood education field.

The IDB reports that through this initiative the country will work to improve the low rates of access to early childhood services and address the inequality created by the limited offer of such services by the public sector. Data for 2016 show that only 18% of children under the age of five are covered by child-care services nationwide. In addition, 85% of children under the age of five who do receive early childhood services do so in private centers, involving an expense for families and raising a major access barrier for the poorest.

The IDB project will fund early childhood services that will include: early stimulation for children from 0 to 2 years of age; early education for children from 3 to 5 years of age; nutrition monitoring and promotion for children; and a training program for parents on good child-rearing practices. By targeting children in vulnerable areas, the project aims to guarantee that all students have access to quality early childhood education that will enhance the country’s human capital.

The IDB loan is for a 25-year term, with a five-year grace period, and a LIBOR-based interest rate.

Source: DR1, bnamericas

Dec 9, 2016

Category: DR News |

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