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  • Education Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is encouraging parents to provide support to teachers in preparing students for the upcoming Grade Four Literacy and Numeracy Test to be held on June 30.
  • He said parents can assist “by reading to students and having them read back to you.”
  • Rev. Thwaites was speaking at the St. Michael’s Infant and Primary School’s Grand Literacy, Numeracy and Health Expo held on May 20, at the institution’s downtown Kingston campus.

Education Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is encouraging parents to provide support to teachers in preparing students for the upcoming Grade Four Literacy and Numeracy Test to be held on June 30.

He said parents can assist “by reading to students and having them read back to you.”

Rev. Thwaites  was speaking at the St. Michael’s Infant and Primary School’s Grand Literacy, Numeracy and Health Expo held on May 20, at the institution’s downtown Kingston campus.

The Grade Four Literacy and Numeracy Test, which measures the literacy and numeracy skills of the grade four cohort, is part of the national development targets of the Ministry of Education.

The Ministry is working to achieve 85 per cent mastery in literacy at the grade four level this year, and a similar 85 per cent mastery for numeracy in 2018.

Minister Thwaites noted that literacy and numeracy are among the most important skills for students to master at the early childhood and primary school levels.

“We have to really concentrate and make sure that little children know their letters, know their numbers know their shapes, know how to play and know how to pray. Those are the things to be done in infant school,” he said.

The Education Minister commended St. Michael’s for setting “high standards of discipline and competence in English and Mathematics.

Under the theme: ‘Children’s Safety and Security, Our Priority’, the one-day exposition was part of the rebranding of the institution, which is undergoing major upgrading and rehabilitation so as to create a more conducive learning and teaching environment.

Principal of the school, Juliet Campbell-McPhearson, expressed gratitude for the assistance from the Education Ministry and several corporate entities in the revitalisation effort.

“As a school in an inner city, sometimes, we are graded based on our location. We want to show that we can produce just as well as any other school in the Corporate Area,” she said.

The day’s activities included motivational talks, health checks, and literacy and numeracy contests.

Exhibitors at the expo include the HEART Trust/NTA, Coldax Mart Limited, and Growing Minds.

Among the Government and corporate agencies that have given support to the school’s rebranding campaign are: Registrar  General’s Department (RGD), Urban Development Corporation (UDC), Centre for Investigation of Sexual Offences and Child Abuse (CISOCA), Scotia Foundation, Northern Caribbean University (NCU), and the Jamaica Stock Exchange.