Wanted: An education ministerWednesday, October 13, 2021
When Fayval Williams was named minister of education, youth and information I was surprised. It was clear that Prime Minister Andrew Holness trusted her to manage that mega ministry.
As a fair-minded individual I gave her the benefit of the doubt to prove naysayers like me wrong by rewarding the prime minister and the country with good management. It is now a year later and Fayval Williams is not performing in that ministry.
As an education minister you need to maintain and build relationships with all stakeholders in the sector, including the students and their parents, not only school administrators.
Minister Fayval Williams is a financial analyst and businesswoman by profession; hence, she will most likely pay attention to only the financial state of her ministry. However, when it comes to policies, Minister Williams is missing in action.
Floyd Green could have been a potential education and youth minister, but he has self-destructed; therefore, educators like Robert Miller, Kerensia Morrison, and Rhoda Crawford could be looked at. Pearnel Charles Jr is a family man and a performer, hence the education and youth ministry would also be a good fit for him.
Fayval Williams' experience and expertise is best suited for the Ministry of Investment, Industry and Commerce, the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, or the Ministry of Housing, Urban Renewal, Environment and Climate Change.
The education and youth portfolio is too high profile for such a seemingly low-keyed individual.
In the past, people who have run that ministry were among the top five performers in their administrations. Karl Samuda and now Fayval Williams are seen as non-performers by the public. Many will argue that after the Ruel Reid era it is hard for anyone to rebuild that ministry. Many will also argue that the novel coronavirus pandemic will make any education and youth minister unpopular. I understand those arguments, but Fayval Williams is not the one to rebuild that ministry's image, she's just not relatable.
Ocho Rios, St Ann