- Its role is going to be far more comprehensive than has been conceived in the past
- Of particular focus are the 140,000 unemployed youth
- Equipping people with levels of literacy and numeracy to enable them to seize opportunities for further education
The Ministry of Education, is strategically repositioning the Jamaican Foundation for Life-Long Learning as the central agency for adult education in the country.
Portfolio Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites gave this indication during a reception at the Terra Nova Hotel in Kingston on Wednesday, September 11, to formally introduce the new Executive Director of the foundation, Merris Murray.
“Its role is going to be far more comprehensive than has been conceived in the past and it needs to occupy a place of prominence in the minds of all of our people who must turn to the foundation for expanding their education at any time of their lives,” he stated.
Rev. Thwaites said that of particular focus is that some 140,000 youth are unemployed partially because they are not sufficiently educated; and are not certified to occupy jobs that are available or will become available.
He noted that equipping people with levels of literacy and numeracy to enable them to seize opportunities for further education or to become productive citizens is paramount to the national development agenda.
“Advancing education at whatever level and stage of life, is in fact the most important investment that one can make in one’s individual future and national success,” Mr. Thwaites said.
He noted that the JFLL’s flagship programme – the High School Diploma Equivalent, will give many people who did not complete their secondary education the opportunity to do so.
“This is a platform from which beneficiaries can re-launch their career goals. Jamaica has to offer its citizens second chances, in order for all of us to succeed,” he said.
Rev. Thwaites said the JFLL will need to collaborate with various agencies, in and outside of the education sector to effectively carry out its mandate. “It is anticipated that the delivery of the High School Diploma Equivalent Programme will be done in collaboration with agencies such as the HEART Trust NTA and the Jamaica Library Service whose island wide network computer facilities are most appropriate,” he said.
Congratulating the new Executive Director on her appointment, Rev. Thwaites said “her wide experience in the education sector as well as her involvement in small business facilitation makes her most suitable for this appointment.”
The JFLL began as JAMAL Foundation in 1973.
It operates 29 Adult Education Centres (AEC) with 100 volunteer AECs across Jamaica, and partners with other agencies and programmes to change lives by offering educational opportunities for all persons of all ages.