Cacho Moves from Department of Education to Deputy Governor’s Office

The Deputy Governor, the Honorable Franz Manderson, announced the transfer of Chief Officer Cetonya Cacho to a new role within the Office of the Deputy Governor.

“I am pleased to announce that effective July 1, 2022, Ms. Cetonya Cacho will transition from her role as Chief Executive Officer within the Ministry of Education to a key strategic position within the Deputy Governor’s Office,” said said Mr. Manderson. . “As our Strategic Operations Officer, Ms. Cacho will join a busy and high performing team. His skills, competencies and experience gained as CEO will enhance the capacity of my office and ultimately help our team deliver a variety of key strategic projects and services across the function. public.

Earlier in the year, Chief Officer Cacho expressed his desire to work beyond education and use his skills, knowledge and experience to engage in projects in the entire public service.

Ms. Cacho will immediately focus on the policies and strategies needed to ensure the effective operation of the Child Safeguarding Board. “This council has national level responsibilities to develop strategies, plans, policies and procedures that enhance the protection of our children in the Cayman Islands,” Mr. Manderson said. “Ms. Cacho’s training and experience will prove critical in this area, particularly as the Council implements a new organizational structure and launches far-reaching programs and transformation projects to enhance our protection work. from childhood.

Among other duties, Ms. Cacho will be responsible for identifying and coordinating activities across the public service that drive innovation, collaboration, and delivering government priorities at pace. She will also lead efforts to improve the timeliness and quality of responses to key governance and management recommendations from the Auditor General and the Audit and Risk Assurance Committee.

“I’m really looking forward to Ms. Cacho joining our team,” said Mr. Manderson.

Ms. Cacho thanked the Cayman Islands government for the opportunity to serve her country as Chief Education Officer during one of the country’s most difficult times. She added: “My entire career in public service has been dedicated to education. It is an area in which I have great passion and interest. In the last two years in particular, I have invested an incredible amount of personal time in the ministry. This was in an effort to keep our children safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, learning loss was minimized and our students were able to make significant progress when they have resumed learning in the classroom.I am proud of the education response at the height of the pandemic and as we continue to manage COVID in our community.

“Chief Officer Cacho has played a vital role in the operations of the Ministry of Education for many years,” remarked Minister of Education, Hon. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly. “I have had the pleasure of working closely with her since my appointment as Minister of Education in 2017 and have always held her leadership in high regard. I thank Mrs. Cacho for her remarkable contribution to education and wish her the best in her future endeavours. »

Ms Cacho’s transfer takes effect on Friday July 1 and Deputy Chief Executive Ms Lyneth Monteith will act as Chief Executive of the Department of Education.

General information about Chief Officer Cacho

Ms. Cacho began her career as a teacher after graduating from the University of Miami with a dual bachelor’s degree in elementary education and psychology.

She then completed a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Southampton, where she focused on higher education management and graduated with honours.

She was principal of Bodden Town Primary School, Head of Initial Teacher Education, Deputy and Acting Principal in the Department of Education before being appointed Chief Executive of the largest government department with around 1,000 members. of staff in 2019. During her tenure as Chief Executive, she oversaw the Education, Youth, Sports, Agriculture and Lands portfolios.

Ms. Cacho led many successful education initiatives including the review of the Education Act 2016 and associated regulations 2017. She also oversaw initiatives such as the hiring of new Caymanian Principals, the improvement of child protection procedures, the presentation of the Minister’s priority projects for a new primary school curriculum, a salary increase for teachers and the recent introduction of free school meals.

Under his leadership, public schools and early childhood education centers also improved from “poor” to “satisfactory” or “good”, with three public schools earning good marks from the Office of Education Standards – John Gray High School, Lighthouse School and Scott Lay High Schools.

Before schools closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms Cacho had created detailed procedures for school closures and remote learning, ensuring education could continue for students across the islands. . Additionally, staff have been redeployed to prioritize student health and safety with a particular focus on child protection, throughout the pandemic. Staff monitored and addressed issues of hunger, insecurity, security, abuse and psychological stressors. This has been achieved through access to counsellors, special educational needs specialists and partnership services from the Health Services Authority (HSA), Needs Assessment Unit (NAU), Center Family Resources (FRC) and the Department of Child and Family Services (DCFS).

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Ms. Cacho led the education system with carefully crafted guidelines and procedures ensuring schools were ready to open and that the health and safety of students and staff was a priority.

She also developed detailed policies and procedures on lateral flow testing in collaboration with the Strategic Reform Unit and other government agencies, which included ongoing collaboration and partnership with the Department of Public Health and the Ministry of Health.

She developed the framework for all public schools to design plans to address learning loss. There has also been a collaborative effort between the Department of Education, Department of Educational Services and schools to address the learning loss gap through increased hours in the literacy program and numeracy when in-person instruction resumed in August 2020, as these subjects are the building blocks for all subject areas. Schools have also implemented other strategies, including extra classes, increased interventions outside of school hours, and independent or small group sessions. Additional resources have been identified and training, particularly for reading and numeracy to help teachers further fill gaps for students, is also an ongoing process.