- Principal of Allman Town Primary School, Kandi-Lee Crooks-Smith, and York Castle High School English teacher, Nickashie Hardware, are the 2015/2016 LASCO/Ministry of Education Principal and Teacher of the Year.
- Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, who spoke at the awards ceremony, lauded the finalists for their dedication to improving the country’s education system.
- LASCO and the Ministry of Education have been honouring educators since 1997.
Principal of Allman Town Primary School, Kandi-Lee Crooks-Smith, and York Castle High School English teacher, Nickashie Hardware, are the 2015/2016 LASCO/Ministry of Education Principal and Teacher of the Year.
They were named as winners of the coveted awards at a ceremony held on November 24 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, New Kingston.
For their victory, the principal and teacher received the champion trophy, $250,000 cash prize, and an all expense paid trip to the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) conference in Houston Texas in 2016.
Thirteen outstanding educators at the early childhood, primary and secondary school levels, comprising six principals and seven teachers, were nominated for the awards, in recognition of their positive an exception impact on the school community, as well as for their contribution to nation building through education.
The first runners-up for the Teacher and Principal of the Year Awards were Donna Reid of Manchester High, and Raymon Treasure of York Castle High, respectively, who were presented with a trophy, $150,000 cash prize, as well as an all-expense paid trip to the ASCD conference.
The second runners-up, English and Mathematics teacher at Santa Cruz Primary and Junior High, Karen Smith Whyte, and Principal of Pembroke Hall Primary, Norma Eugiene McNeil, received a trophy and $100,000. Each finalist got plaques, gift certificates and baskets.
Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, who spoke at the awards ceremony, lauded the finalists for their dedication to improving the country’s education system.
“Where you have dedicated teachers… where you have visionary principals and where you have a hearty cooperation between parents, teachers and alumni, that is the (combination) of our success… the Ministry of Education offers warm congratulations, strong support for the teachers of Jamaica,” he said.
Rev. Thwaites commended LASCO for its steadfast commitment to the education sector, and for the sponsorship of the annual awards programme, which saw $5.5 million in cash and prizes presented this year.
“Your company is a trailblazer in recognising the worth of many professions in Jamaica,” he noted.
Founder and Executive Chairman of LASCO Affiliated Companies, Hon. Lascelles Chin, commended all the finalists for their dedication to providing outstanding instruction.
“LASCO Principals and Teachers of the Year naturally fall into the category of great teachers. You do inspire. When we read the submissions for your nominations, we see brave Jamaican teachers with fortitude and with determination, ready to inspire and bring hope. Now, more than ever, our nation desperately requires inspirational leadership in our educational institutions. You are that leadership,” he said.
The annually staged event featured a new element to the nomination process, inviting parents, community members and students to submit their candidates for the awards.
In previous years only teachers, principals and members of the school administrative body were allowed to submit nominations.
LASCO and the Ministry of Education have been honouring educators since 1997.