• JIS News

    A total of 100 secondary schools will be provided with hand-held metal detectors, to screen for offensive weapons, which is in keeping with the Ministry of Education’s on-going programme to improve security in schools.
    As contained in a Ministry Paper tabled in the House of Representatives recently by the Education Minister, Andrew Holness, these metal detectors have been procured, guidelines have been developed and distribution will be done shortly.
    Also, in support of maintaining and achieving discipline in schools, the Programme for Alternative Student Support (PASS) was introduced. This is a responsive programme designed to address the needs of students at the secondary level with chronic maladaptive behaviours that often lead to interruption of their secondary education.
    The programme is geared towards providing an alternative to suspensions or expulsions and provides opportunities for students in psychological assessment and/or therapy and ensures that minimal disruptions occur from these behaviours.
    In addition, the Adjustment and Social Integrated Programme (ASIP) was implemented to aid in reducing the incidents of separations through suspensions and expulsions from the formal education system, as well as providing educational alternatives for those who have been separated.
    The three major objectives of the programme are: to minimize cases of suspensions and expulsions of students in secondary grades; establish facilities for all persons of school age, who have been expelled from the system to complete secondary education; and facilitate collaboration among parents, school and community to provide students with social and emotional support.
    The guidance and counselling programme has also been strengthened with the provision of additional guidance officers to each region. In addition, more guidance counsellors have been employed, thereby increasing the cadre of counsellors in the system. Also, a number of teachers have received training in guidance and counselling that should impact behaviour management in the system.
    Additionally, the Health and Family Life Education Programme was revised and re-introduced into the system at the primary and lower secondary level. The programme is life skills based and provides opportunities for the development of the following skills: decision making; effective communication; critical and creative thinking; negotiation, among others.
    In an effort to provide additional support to management of schools, the position of Dean of Discipline is being considered for establishment in schools. The assigned person will be expected to have full responsibility for safety and security issues in the schools and will work closely with the management of the institution as well as the guidance counsellors.

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