Teachers urged to focus on areas of expertise
KINGSTON, Jamaica - Education Minister Ronald Thwaites has urged teachers embarking on professional advancement, to focus on their areas of expertise, in pursuit of this endeavour.
“There are many teachers who are studying and doing well in subjects that have no relationship to what they teach in school.; that cannot work .We have to focus on the areas of greatest need,” the education minister stressed.
He was addressing the 2012 Ministry of Education/Jamaica Teaching Council, World Teacher’s Day Leadership in Education award ceremony, at the Higgins Land Primary and Junior High School in St. Ann, on Friday.
While emphasising that there is no aversion to “academic liberalism”, Thwaites said it is more practical for educators to pursue training in the subjects they are required to deliver the requisite quality outputs, in teaching their students.
He added that where the training incorporated state resources, “we have to be very centred, focussed, and surgical in how we use (what) we have, to achieve the objectives that everyone wants”.
On the practice of schools offering extra lessons to students, Thwaites said that while this was an important endeavour, it should not substitute for, or replicate, what is taught during the regular class periods. Rather, that it should complement and advance existing curricula content.
Meanwhile, Principal of the Higgins Land Primary and Junior High School, Fay Sterling, was awarded this year’s World Teachers’ Day Leadership in Education Award, which presented during the ceremony Friday.
A veteran educator of 33 years, Sterling has been Principal of Higgins Land Primary and Junior High School since 2007.
World Teachers’ Day has been observed annually, on October 5, since its establishment by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), in1994.