MANDEVILLE – The St. Elizabeth Parish Council plans to review the delivery of education in the parish, at its next monthly meeting, in April.
The Council is to receive a status report from personnel at the Ministry of Education, on how students in the parish are progressing in terms of examinations administered by the Ministry.
Mayor of Black River, Councillor Jeremy Palmer, says that one objective of the review is to have the Ministry take another look on how children in the parish are placed in high schools, especially where there is no real advantage in moving them from one end of the parish to the other to attend school.
“It can be a security issue, it can be a cost issue and, even if it was an issue of choice, it has to be weighed,” Councillor Palmer told the monthly meeting on March 10.
Speaking on an Education Committee recently created by the Council, Mayor Palmer said the administration of education impacts on the parish, and the local authority must be involved with issues affecting educational institutions in the parish. He suggested that where management is weak, if the schools know that they are being monitored by the Council, it could make a difference.
“The intention is to look at the condition of not only the achievements of students, but also the state of the facilities and what we could do to help to make these facilities more friendly to students: Councillors do it in their individual ways, but we would like it to come to the attention of the Council, so that we can highlight some of the critical issues in the educational institutions,” the Mayor added.
Last December, the Council awarded two nursing scholarships to students attending the Northern Caribbean University (NCU). Each student receives $100,000 per year, for three years. At that time, the Mayor said that he wanted to make the development of education a priority of his administration.
“We are going to strive to maintain a high level of transparency (in terms) of how the system works, so that this can become a model for such funding,” he assured the Council.
CONTACT: GARFIELD L. ANGUS
JIS REGIONAL OFFICE