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  • The same material is available through books provided under the book rental scheme and through technology
  • The Government is spending almost $900 million to provide children with a text book in each subject, in each grade
  • Parents should give themselves some space when buying extra books

Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is encouraging parents not to buy a large number of text books, when the same material is available through books provided under the book rental scheme and through technology.

“The text books are too long. I am in favour of students reading as much as they can, but buying 15 and 16 books has never been a guarantee that we are going to read them all, and use them all. What we need to do is to visit the school September morning, and see what books are being provided under the book rental scheme,” the Minister said.

Rev. Thwaites was speaking at an awards function, organized by Member of Parliament for North West St. Ann, Dr. Dayton Campbell, for top Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) students, held at the Holiday Haven, in Runaway Bay, on August 25.

The Minister informed that this year the Government is spending almost $900 million to provide children with a text book in each subject, in each grade.

“Find out what is on the text book list that you are to get. It is on the website of the Ministry of Education, and it was published in the Gleaner two Sundays ago. If there is need for an additional book in a subject, ask the teacher which book is going to be used first, because all the books can’t be used at once,” Rev. Thwaites said.

The Minister advised that parents should give themselves some space when buying extra books, and ensure their children have the material needed at the right time, instead of buying them at once.

Rev. Thwaites pointed out that he has come across experiences where children are denied nutrition, while parents buy books that are never used by the children.

“Much of the material is provided by the text books, and other books provided by the Government, and we will be using technology more in your education at the secondary and tertiary levels,” he told the audience, while citing the soon-be-launched television channel that will be televising educational material.

“We are starting with grade 3 literacy and numeracy, because that is a particularly weak area,” the Minister said.

“Be prudent with your expenditure on books. It is better that the child goes to the school library, and it is better that the Internet be used to secure the necessary notes and texts, rather than we have this huge expenditure, which is not deriving the dividend that we want,” Rev. Thwaites said.