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Education Minister Says Sector Must Respond to Needs of Industry


JIS: Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, says the education sector has been undergoing a transformation process to make it more practical, relevant and flexible in response to the critical needs of industry.


“It is imperative that leaders in the public education system keep themselves updated on the new directions in education and training across the globe, and are themselves flexible enough to be change agents and are committed to enabling those they supervise and manage to be integral in the process,” he said.


The Minister was speaking at the Management Institute for National Development (MIND) Regional Leadership Development Conference for public sector leaders, at the Pegasus Hotel, on July 19.


Senator Reid noted that in the past decade, almost every institution or firm has had to transform how they are organised and operate, taking into account the speed and content of information flow.


He argued that within such scenarios, an adaptive leader must be sensitive to reading the signals from below and be prepared to act on them within reasonable time.


“The education sector has multiple layers of interests and thousands of stakeholders. Its leaders at various levels have to communicate their vision and their expectation, as well as national and institutional policies and seek to get others to support them. It is a big challenge,” Senator Reid said.


The Minister added that a leader should be willing to be adaptive, while at the same time be committed to fair play.


“Everyone should know the principles that guide decisions and be aware of institutional policy. Not everyone will support a decision, but there should be no confusion about how that decision was reached,” Mr. Reid said.


He emphasised that a leader must operate with integrity and credibility, noting that failure in this area undermines everything else.


He also noted that a leader must be willing to be retrained and must be committed to capacity building and “helping the team to develop on individual strengths for the greater good of the organisation.”


The two-day conference is being held under the theme: ‘Adaptive Public Sector Leadership, Changing MINDsets, Challenging Assumptions, Creating Transformation’.