The Education and Youth Ministry has been making steady improvements to the system in order to ensure higher levels of equity, improved process and access, and to deliver high-quality education to all students.
Portfolio Minister, Hon. Fayval Williams stated that significant progress has been made in improving the virtual teaching environment, which she noted is one of the areas most critical for strengthening.
On Monday, January 31, Mrs. Williams addressed the closing ceremony of the JTC Mentoring and Induction of Beginning Teachers 2022 ceremony. She stated that these changes reflect the maturing of education.
When you return to education, the classroom you will see is one where students and teachers have more learning tools than ever before. The digital divide, although still not completely closed, has been greatly reduced, she stated.
She pointed out that the COVID-19 pandemic had forced the restructuring and migration of most teaching and learning activities online.
I can assure you, inductees that the education system in Jamaica has been strengthened to absorb shocks. The Minister also stated that resources have been provided to make it more responsive, flexible, targeted, and responsive for individual learning needs.
Mrs. Williams expressed gratitude to the approximately 1,000 beginning-teachers who are entering the profession in a critical and consequential time.
She stated that the Ministry is excited to welcome new members to the profession, and has high expectations for you.
Allison Solomon, Senior Director, Teacher Development Services at JTC, stated that the Council has modified its programs to prepare new teachers for the changing teaching landscape.
This cohort shows how the system has changed in teacher preparation, with an increased reliance on technology and shifts in operating norms, health protocols, and other pandemic related changes. Ms. Solomon stated that by supporting teachers, we support their learning and the sustenance a robust education system.
The rigorous program of study was provided by 13 teachers-training institutions and departments across the island. The new teachers also received 20 hours of intensive job readiness training from the JTC.
The programme provides one year of professional support to new teachers to help them develop the necessary skills and knowledge to become successful teachers in the education sector.
The theme of Transforming Education and the Digital Space was used for the ceremony.