JIS News

The Jamaica Tertiary Education Foundation is to be launched soon, Minister of Education, Hon. Andrew Holness, told students attending a Town Hall Meeting at the Mona Campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI) in Kingston on Tuesday night.
“Today, I spent three hours with a team from the Ministry, looking at how we are going to manage and regulate the tertiary sector,” Mr. Holness told the students.
“Very soon, we will be launching the Jamaica Tertiary Education Foundation. This Foundation will be set up to manage the evolution and development of tertiary education in Jamaica. It will set standards for tertiary education. It will plan Government’s involvement in the tertiary sector and it will, ofcourse, deal with the matter of accreditation,” the Minister expanded.
He said that, as soon as the Foundation is launched, the Government will announce the national tertiary education policy, as well as its policy on financing tertiary education.
The assembly hall at the Mona campus was filled with students and other interested persons, attending the eighth in the series of Town Hall meetings being staged by Prime Minister the Hon. Bruce Golding, to discuss the Government’s policies and programmes with the public.Prior to Mr. Golding’s presentation, the Education Minister gave an outline of Government’s plans for tertiary education.
“Change is always very difficult, but we have spent a lot of time thinking over the policy, and we are going to make sure that the change is equitable; that the change is manageable; and that no one is left behind,” Mr. Holness assured the students.
He said that, since becoming Minister, he has placed the universities on alert that they need to become more agile and more efficient, as the sector is expanding.
“There is really competition out there and, if the universities are going to survive, they will have to get used to competition,” he explained.
Mr. Holness reiterated that the Government was looking at a savings programme to support Jamaicans pursuing tertiary education. This will be done through the establishment of the National Education Trust Fund, a part of which will be contributory. It will encourage persons to think of financing tertiary education, in the same way they think about owning a home and financing a mortgage, he said.
“We are going to make sure that anyone who qualifies for tertiary education, who meets the matriculation requirements of the institution, that funding their entry into the institution will not be an obstacle. That is the guarantee and the commitment that we give to students who are in tertiary institutions, and students who plan to get into tertiary institutions,” the Minister said.
The meeting was hosted by Taylor Hall.

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