Gov’t Looking to Raise Profile of Jamaica Day

Photo: Claudia Gardner Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green.

Story Highlights

  • Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, says the Government is looking to make the annual Jamaica Day celebration a key event on the national activities calendar.
  • “We have determined as a Government and as a Ministry that we want to put renewed emphasis and interest on Jamaica Day… . What we really want to do, and we have started over the past two years, is to raise the profile and get into the psyche of everybody that this is an important day on the schools’ calendar,” he said.
  • “The next step is to ensure that it is an important day on the nation’s calendar. And what we want to see, and it is something that we still be pushing for next year, is to see more ministries coming on board,” he added.

Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, says the Government is looking to make the annual Jamaica Day celebration a key event on the national activities calendar.

He said the Ministry wants to have a wider cross section of ministries, as well as the members of the private sector, embracing the day.

“We have determined as a Government and as a Ministry that we want to put renewed emphasis and interest on Jamaica Day… . What we really want to do, and we have started over the past two years, is to raise the profile and get into the psyche of everybody that this is an important day on the schools’ calendar,” he said.

Mr. Green was speaking with JIS News following the opening ceremony for the national Jamaica Day celebrations held on Friday, February 23 at Munro College in St. Elizabeth under the theme ‘Celebrating Jamaica: Nurturing our Cultural and Natural Heritage’.

He said that the successful staging of the day was due, in part, to the renewed emphasis that the Government has placed on the cultural event.

“The next step is to ensure that it is an important day on the nation’s calendar. And what we want to see, and it is something that we still be pushing for next year, is to see more ministries coming on board,” he added.

The State Minister said the commemoration of Jamaica Day is tremendously important for students, as it serves to remind them “about the greatness of the country that they are a part of, to generate patriotism and to reflect on some of the great achievements and how we can use those achievements to move us forward”.

The Jamaica Day activities at Munro included a parade by members of the Jamaica Combined Cadet Force (JCCF), performances by the Munro College Band, the Hampton School Steel Band, Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts, reading of the Jamaica Day Proclamation as well as the symbolic passing of the baton from last year’s hosts, Green Island High School, to Munro.

Scores of students from infant, primary and high schools across St. Elizabeth and other parishes attended the event, which also featured an exciting car show, heritage tours, cultural display, food booths, a student cook-off and an afternoon cultural concert.

“Munro has gone all out to ensure they have a first-class production and we are happy that the private sector has come on board. Clearly, this is a joint initiative between ourselves and the Ministry of Culture (Gender, Entertainment and Sport), and we are happy that we are taking that approach,” Mr. Green said.

“I was very confident that this brand of excellence they (Munro) have brought to the Jamaica Day celebrations would help us on our mission to raise the profile of the event,” he added.

Headmaster of Munro College, Mark Smith, commended the ministries, staff members, parents, students and the private sector, who, he said, gave full support to the planning and execution of the activities.

“We really have been having a day that showcases the best of Jamaica. I often say that irrespective of the problems that we have as a country, the best of Jamaica is still something that we see being demonstrated every day in our schools, and an event like Jamaica Day helps to lay that out and underscore the value of that,” Mr. Smith said.

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