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JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Senior Education Officer in the Core Curriculum Unit of the Ministry of Education, Marlon Williams, says plans are in high gear for Jamaica Day 2016 celebrations.
  • The annual celebrations, which are usually held on the last Friday in February, will take place instead on Friday, March 4.
  • Mr. Williams told JIS News that in light of the general election, which was held on February 25, the 2016 activities in schools were postponed.

Senior Education Officer in the Core Curriculum Unit of the Ministry of Education, Marlon Williams, says plans are in high gear for Jamaica Day 2016 celebrations.

The annual celebrations, which are usually held on the last Friday in February, will take place instead on Friday, March 4.

Mr. Williams told JIS News that in light of the general election, which was held on February 25, the 2016 activities in schools were postponed.

Jamaica Day 2016 will be observed under the theme: ‘Celebrating Jamaica, Promoting the Arts’.

The focus this year is the Creative Industries/the Arts, looking at areas such as Music, Dance, Drama, Visual Arts, Theatre/Film, Designing, Literary Arts and Culinary Arts, among others.

“The aim of Jamaica Day activities is to educate while we celebrate and promote Jamaica’s Creative Industries,” Mr. Williams said.

“Jamaica has so much resources here, material and human. We were designated the best place to do business in the Caribbean and that says a lot for us.  So, on that day while we celebrate, we should be proud of what we have and to strive to make it even better,” he added.

Mr. Williams said that from Jamaica Day 2016 activities, “we want to see greater awareness of the careers that are part of the creative and cultural industries, as we prepare the students for the world of work.”

“While they are being exposed…they will develop an appreciation for their rich heritage and culture that exist here in Jamaica,” he added.

“So, it is more than just showing an appreciation for our heritage and our culture or building the positive identity that we want to build in our students.  It is really preparing them for life.  When they enter the working world, they can even create their own employment,” Mr. Williams said.

The official Jamaica Day celebration will take place at the St. Mary Technical High School in Richmond.  It will involve the ceremonial opening, with uniformed groups from the schools in that region taking part.

According to Mr. Williams, the school will be transformed into a hotel, depicting all the various components of a resort, while capturing all the art forms in the theme.

“We are expecting to see a space in the school transformed into a room similar to what we see in a five-star hotel.  We will have craft items on display and on that day the school will invite craft vendors to display their items. The craft items that the students have created will also be on display.  The culinary aspect will feature food preparation that takes place at the hotel. There will be a games lounge, where participants can engage in video games,” he said.

Jamaica Day is a part of the Culture in Education Programme, run by the Ministry of Education. It seeks to celebrate the many markers of unique “Jamaican-ness” and the country’s contribution to the world, which is represented in its continuous striving for excellence and greatness.