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JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Hon. Dr. Wykeham McNeill on Friday, October 9, officially handed over a refurbished and fully equipped home economics department to the Little London High School in Westmoreland.
  • The facility boasts state-of-the art industrial stoves, electrical equipment and utensils, among other modern facilities and was funded by the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) at a cost of $4 million under its Centres of Excellence Programme.
  • During a tour of the expanded facility, Dr. McNeill participated in various demonstrations of pastry-making, after which he commended the students and their teachers for their positive approach to skills training at the institution.

Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Hon. Dr. Wykeham McNeill on Friday, October 9, officially handed over a refurbished and fully equipped home economics department to the Little London High School in Westmoreland.

The facility boasts state-of-the art industrial stoves, electrical equipment and utensils, among other modern facilities and was funded by the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) at a cost of $4 million under its Centres of Excellence Programme.

During a tour of the expanded facility, Dr. McNeill participated in various demonstrations of pastry-making, after which he commended the students and their teachers for their positive approach to skills training at the institution.

The Tourism Minister also noted that the TEF has initiated the Centres of Excellence programme in selected school, to develop areas of the curricula that would benefit the industry.

“We…. here at Little London High School ….had a programme considered to be a successful one with training in Bar Tending, Home Economics and Food Preparations, but the facilities were not what we would have wanted,” Dr. McNeill said.

“Through the TEF, funding of some $4 million was provided and they have created this state-of-the art lab… all the work done in the new lab was done by the school.  They are now on the way to integrating themselves into the tourism sector,” he added.

Meanwhile, Dr. McNeill noted that as Jamaica’s tourism sector continues to grow, the TEF was committed to ensuring the availability of a suitable skilled work-force for the industry to draw on.

“The philosophy of the Ministry now, in regards to tourism is that, while we want visitors to come to Jamaica to enjoy the country…the most important thing is to see the extent to which we can use tourism as a tool for social and economic development.  In order to do that, we’ve got to integrate it into the economy,” he told JIS News.

The TEF has committed a total of $20 million to a programme in schools that will promote improvement in food and nutrition; food preparation; the creative arts, including music; languages; and agriculture.

The five participating schools are Ocho Rios High, Marcus Garvey High, Grange Hill High, Irwin High and Green Island High. The schools which are included, currently serve as feeder institutions for entities in the tourism areas.