JIS News

The Ministry of Education is exploring ways in which technology can be used to support teaching and learning in the country’s primary schools.
This is through the instructional technology sub-component of the Primary Education Support Project (PESP), which is focused on building the capacity of teachers to use technology to deliver the curriculum.
“So much so that it becomes a natural medium and that the children see it as a medium that promotes learning,” explained Jean Hastings, Manager of the PESP.
Mrs. Hastings, who was addressing today’s (Oct. 17) award ceremony for primary school teachers, who participated in the PSEP’s instructional technology competition, informed that the programme looks at three areas: improving the attendance of students; improving the performance of students with a focus on boys; and improving the performance of teachers within the schools.
“We have attendance problems in more than 100 of our schools for various reasons, some of which relate to socio-economic problems, but some of them relate to the need to enrich the curriculum to gain the interest of students,” she pointed out.
She noted that boys tend to be interested in digital devices and “so it is thought that perhaps their interest would be peaked with the use of the technology in their classroom.”
“We are also looking at how (technology) improves the performance of the teachers themselves, how they are better able to deliver their lessons through research on the internet and through the challenge that they face in preparing their lessons to be delivered using a technology medium,” she added.
The instructional technology competition was developed to enhance teachers’ skills in designing and developing technology-based instructional materials to support the revised primary curriculum and to foster the integration of various technology tools in the instructional process.
At the award function held at the Ministry of Education’s Caenwood Centre on Arnold Road in Kingston, 15 primary school teachers received prizes.
First place went to Ewan Simpson from St. John’s Primary School; Sheldon Haynes from Columbus Preparatory School was placed second; while Shirlette Kelly Ferrari of the former Ewarton Primary School was third.
The Primary Education Support Project began in January 2001 and is aimed at supporting the gains that were achieved under the Primary Education Improvement Projects I and II.
The project also addresses other concerns in the education sector as it seeks to improve the quality of the delivery and management of educational services at the primary level.

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