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The Ministry of Education's head office on St Vincent Street, Port-of-Spain.

Parents of children who are yet to secure a place in the public primary school system are being asked to contact the District Education Office.

The final placements for primary schools continue this week. Most denominational schools have already secured their intake of first-year pupils and are preparing for online orientation.

A source at the Ministry of Education said because of the COVID-19 restrictions, placements of students had been delayed.

“The submission of application forms was supposed to have taken place a week before the COVID-19 restrictions went into effect. However, many schools are still in the process of finalising the intake,” the source said.

Booklists and welcome acceptance packages have been issued to successful candidates and some schools are organising to have orientation sessions with the pupils.

The source said those parents whose children have not secured a place, must lodge a report to the District Education Office and the school supervisor will look at various schools and organise placements.

“We have many cases where people apply outside of their catchment areas. Some parents want their children to go to the so-called prestige schools and so they submit only one application. When they do not get into the school, they end up having no place. This is why we urge parents to apply in at least three schools in their catchment areas,” the source added.

Assuring that all first-year primary school students will get a placement, the official said the school supervisor will look into the list of available schools and provide options.

“You may not get the school you desire but all students will get a placement. Some schools have already started selecting their list of students. Some have already completed the registration and supervisors will look at the choices,” he added.

Primary education is compulsory and provided free of cost in T&T. There are over 483 schools throughout the country that have been approved by the Ministry of Education to provide primary-level education. (RDS)