Education minister gives assurance to book industry


Education minister gives assurance to book industry

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

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MINISTER of Education, Youth and Information Fayval Williams has assured representatives of the Book Industry Association of Jamaica (BIAJ) that the ministry was committed to working collaboratively with them as the country moves into utilising e-books and more of the online platforms for teaching and learning.

The ministry, in a release yesterday, said concerns were raised by Latoya West-Blackwood, chairperson of the BIAJ, during a meeting with Minister Williams at her National Heroes' Circle offices about the implication for members as schools move to conduct more classes online. She said there were concerns about copyright and downloading of material from textbooks where there was no agreement on copying printed material in schools. She, however, committed to working with the ministry on behalf of her members towards the transition into e-books.

Minister Williams assured the book industry that the ministry would ensure that the necessary agreements on copyright and copying printed material in schools are put in place in the shortest possible time.

Additionally, Minister Williams emphasised that she understood the need to respect intellectual property rights and that the ministry would not seek to violate those rights. “At the same time, we want to move more into the e-book realm, especially into interactive publication and so on,” Minister Williams was quoted by the release.

She also assured the BIAJ of the ministry's commitment to ongoing collaboration in the move towards the transition, guided by the regulatory framework.

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