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    • Schools across the island will join in the national observation of Jamaica Day, on Friday, February 22, under the theme: ‘Celebrating Jamaica: Embracing Positive Values…Visioning Inclusive Education for a better Jamaica’.
    • The day was officially launched on Thursday (January 31), at the Hope Botanical Gardens, in Kingston.
    • This year, students are expected to use the arts – Dance, Drama, Music, Visual Arts and other forms – to promote concepts learnt from the National Standards Curriculum, while they display other aspects of the country’s culture.

    Schools across the island will join in the national observation of Jamaica Day, on Friday, February 22, under the theme: ‘Celebrating Jamaica: Embracing Positive Values…Visioning Inclusive Education for a better Jamaica’.

    The day was officially launched on Thursday (January 31), at the Hope Botanical Gardens, in Kingston.

    This year, students are expected to use the arts – Dance, Drama, Music, Visual Arts and other forms – to promote concepts learnt from the National Standards Curriculum, while they display other aspects of the country’s culture.

    Speaking at the launch, Chairman, Jamaica Day Planning Committee and Senior Education Officer, Core Curriculum Unit at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Marlon Williams, said children are also encouraged to place emphasis on positive values as part of their presentations.

    He noted that the Education Ministry, in partnership with other Ministries, will be highlighting the theme through a grand ‘Best Decorated Building Competition’.

    All Ministries will be required to decorate their buildings or main building using the Jamaican colours.

    “We are asking that these buildings be donned or draped in these colours as early as the first week of February. A team from the Jamaica Day Planning Committee will be visiting these buildings during the week of February 11 -15 to judge and take pictures,” Mr. Williams said.

    The national celebration will be hosted at the National Arena, where a civic ceremony will begin at 8:30 a.m.

    “Schools will still host activities individually. However, each school will be required to send ten students to the National Arena accompanied by the school’s Culture Agent and another member of staff,” the Senior Education Officer said.

    Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Dean-Roy Bernard (left); Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Denzil Thorpe (second left), and Chairman, Jamaica Day Planning Committee and Senior Education Officer, Core Curriculum Unit at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Marlon Williams, enjoy a recital of ‘Independence Dignity’ by Grade Six student at the Half-Way Tree Primary School, Sheneika Medley. Occasion was the launch of Jamaica Day on Thursday (January 31), at Hope Botanical Gardens, in Kingston.

    “The move to the National Arena is an effort to showcase to Jamaica and the rest of the world that as a country, we are united in recognising a day dedicated to the exposition of our culture. As such, representatives from other Ministries and non-governmental organisations will be participating in the celebrations there,” he added.

    At the event, students and all other attendees will be given an opportunity to view rich cultural displays in the village which will be set up.

    Also, schools and other organisations will be displaying their innovations in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics.

    “Many other Ministries and entities will have things on display which will be beneficial to everyone as part of the ‘Inclusive Education for a better Jamaica’,” Mr. Williams said.

    The day will culminate with a concert, under the tag line: ‘Put some PEP inna yu step with love an respect’. The concert will feature some of the country’s best school bands and other performers, including notable or popular artistes from the music industry

    “We are expecting the Jamaican colours and the Bandana to be worn by everyone in all entities and sectors – to school, to work, to transact business…even on the farm… as a symbol of our commitment to celebrating Jamaica on February 22, 2019,” Mr. Williams said.

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