Westmoreland Early Childhood Schools Receive $3.5 Million


Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Youth, Senator Noel Monteith, on Friday (April 20) presented the Sterling Early Childhood Institution, and Ferris Primary School in Westmoreland with cheques totaling $3.5 million, to assist in infrastructure development projects.
The funds, which were provided by the Ministry of Education and Youth, will be used to enhance physical education facilities, establish additional classroom space, develop modern sanitary conveniences and improve the general teaching and learning facilities in both institutions.
The presentation of the funds, which was made by the State Minister at the schools, during separate ceremonies, saw Sterling Early Childhood Institution receiving $1.5 million, and Ferris Primary $2 million.
Addressing the presentation ceremony, Senator Monteith paid tribute to Attorney at Law, Fred Hamaty, State Minister for Tourism, Entertainment and Culture, and Member of Parliament for Western Westmoreland, Dr. Wykeham McNeill, and businessman Jimmy McKenzie for the interest they have collectively demonstrated in the wellbeing of educational institutions across the parish of Westmoreland.
Noting that several initiatives have been introduced since the passage of the Early Childhood Act (2005) and related regulations, Senator Monteith said the funds were being provided as part of the Government’s emphasis on the overall improvement of the early childhood sector, as well as other educational institutions across the island.
He informed that a registration process of all early childhood institutions would begin in the next school year, which will see 37 inspectors going around to all basic schools in the country. “In addition to this, the Early Childhood Commission recently launched a public education campaign, with workshops held across the island in an effort to apprise all stakeholders on the regulations and standards for the operation of early childhood institutions in Jamaica”, Senator Monteith pointed out.
He observed that further efforts to assist stakeholders were advanced with the presentation of a handbook entitled ‘Start them right’, which sets out standards relating to staffing, physical environment, and health and nutrition, which the institutions were expected to attain overtime.
Senator Monteith used the opportunity to encourage students to make good use of the facilities and the opportunities of educational advancements provided for them in schools. He stressed that the government has pledged to spend millions to transform the education system to ensure that the philosophy of ‘every child can learn, every child must learn’ is achieved.

JIS Social