Education Ministry says it is ensuring students are future-ready
ST JAMES, Jamaica – Minister of Education and Youth, Fayval Williams, says the Ministry is committed to implementing measures to equip students with “future-ready” skills.
“As we move forward, we want our schools to be equipped with technology, so that you, our students, have full exposure to what is there, because none of us… can say with any great certainty what jobs will be available to our students in 10 to 15 years from now,” she noted.
The Minister was addressing students at the Anchovy High School in St James during the Transforming Education for National Development (TREND) School Pop-up series on January 19.
She noted that increased focus is being placed on Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) as part of helping students become future-ready.
“We want to make sure you have the most modern TVET labs available in all our high schools across Jamaica.…TVET is big on our agenda,” she said.
She is encouraging parents to embrace TVET, noting that many of them think it is only children who are unsuccessful who go the TVET route.
“But, I’m here to tell you that is not so. When we look across the world at other education systems, they are big in TVET,” the Minister said.
The TREND series seeks to outline how the recommendations contained in the Professor Orlando Patterson-led Jamaica Education Transformation Commission (JETC) report will be implemented.
A key objective of the initiative is to involve and get the buy-in of critical stakeholders in the transformation process and change how education is viewed by both students and teachers.
“We want to transform education in Jamaica so that when you, our students and our administrators wake up on a Monday morning you say, ‘yes, we’re going to school. I can’t wait to get to school’,” Minister Williams said.
For her part, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr Kasan Troupe, urged the students to be the best version of themselves.
“We want you to take responsibility for your own learning. If a teacher is not in the classroom, you can do something productive. You can do better by the choices that you make,” she noted.
“My charge for you today is to take advantage of the opportunities,” she said, further encouraging the students to look beyond their current circumstances and to envision the limitless possibilities that lie ahead.
“The future belongs to all of us regardless of our circumstances so don’t be limited by where you have started. Be motivated by your start and embrace your future, excellence is within your reach,” she added.
Dr Troupe assured the students that the Ministry will play its part in ensuring that they have a brighter future.
“For the next seven years we will be building out your schools and making sure that you come into a conducive environment for learning. Some of you will exit the school before that but… education is an immortal gift that never stops giving. So, you will benefit and those after you,” she noted.