JIS News

Minister of Education and Youth, Maxine Henry Wilson, has cautioned parents against spending too much money on their children’s graduation attire, especially at the basic and primary levels, as uniforms, books and school fees were much more important to a child’s education.
“When these little ones leave (primary school) they are going to secondary school and the investment you have to make in them to succeed in secondary school is probably five times the investment you have made for them in primary school,” she told parents at yesterday (July 4) North Street Primary School graduation ceremony held at the North Street United Church downtown Kingston.
“When I go to schools, people will come to me and say.teacher says that my daughter cannot graduate if she does not have a gown that cost this or that .we could have better use for that money,” she stated.
She pointed out that children at the basic and primary levels were not really graduating but were instead moving on to another stage in their educational development. “Children of three and four cannot graduate because to graduate means that you have completed a certain course of study. What they can do is leave one section of school and go to another,” she noted.
The Education Minister also appealed to the parents to continue to support their children as they pursue their secondary level education. “One of the characteristics that children who succeed have in common is that they have the support of their parents from grade one to grade 13 and beyond,” she pointed out.
“We have to recognize that they have many more lines along the journey and that you have to help them to walk each step along that journey to give them the confidence,” Mrs. Henry Wilson continued.
In the meantime, she urged the graduates to not only strive for academic excellence as they pursue their secondary education but strive to have good values and attitudes.
“The Mathematics and the English is important but that is just a part of it.the other part is you having what we call good values, good manners, things like punctuality, respect for authority, respect for others and for self. Many persons have a lot of CXC’s but they don’t have good manners, they don’t present themselves properly.so good values are equally important,” she stated.
“It is not your circumstances that defines, who you want to be. excellence is embodied in every single one of you here, you are capable of being the very best that you want to be,” she told the graduates.

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