JIS: State Minister for Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Alando Terrelonge, has charged educators to help boys realise their full potential by challenging existing norms and stereotypes with respect to constructs of toxic masculinity.

 

Mr. Terrelonge said that social and cultural factors have had negative implications on the learning outcomes of the nation’s boys.

 

He said that educators need to pay keen attention to those issues in an effort to “rescue our boys”.

 

“Sometimes, we throw our boys under the bus and say, ‘boy dem bad or dem give too much trouble’, whilst not recognising the cultural environment in which we live, which places a premium, unfortunately, on toxic masculinity.

 

This affects how our boys behave in the classrooms, in the homes and in the communities. I want all our educators to pay careful attention to this, Mr. Terrelonge said.

 

“Sometimes, the boy giving trouble at the back of the class could be the brightest boy in the class, but because of the social pressures he comes under – if you talk English too good, you’re a girl; if yuh nuh give nuh trouble, you’re a girl – it is that sort of toxic masculinity [that] somehow affects how our boys learn within the classroom and how they grow up and how they behave within their society,” he continued.

 

He noted that educators are well placed to provide guidance in the learning outcomes of the nation’s boys.

“As teachers… you are their mothers, you are their fathers, you are their guardians, you are their councilors… and so pay special attention to our boys. Sometimes they just need the reassurance.

 

“[Let them know] that it’s okay to learn, it’s okay to be yourself, it’s okay to excel. Let no one take that away from you. Perhaps that’s how we can connect more with our young men, by allowing them to be themselves and not pressuring them that the toxic masculinity is the way forward,” he emphasised.

 

Mr. Terrelonge was speaking at the Jamaica Teaching Council’s (JTC) education awards ceremony held at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre, Sam Sharpe Square, St. James, on Tuesday (April 23).

The Education State Minister saluted the awardees for their “sterling service to education, and dedication that will enable many boys and girls to excel in various fields of study and profession in years to come”.

 

A total of 48 individuals and six institutions based in St. James were awarded for excellence in education.

 

Among the individual awardees are Director, Region Four, Dr. Michelle Pinnock and Education Officer, Patricia Mumby-Lalor.

 

CAPTION ONE: State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Alando Terrelonge (left) presents Education Officer for Region four, Patricia Mumby-Lalor, with the individual award for Excellent Service in Education at the Jamaica Teaching Council’s education awards ceremony held at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre on Tuesday, April 23.

 

CAPTION TWO: State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Alando Terrelonge (left) presents Principal of the John Rollins Success Primary School in St. James, Yvonne Miller-Wisdom (second left), with the Jamaica Teaching Council’s Institutional Award for Excellent Service to Education at an awards ceremony held at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre, Sam Sharpe Square, on Tuesday, April 23. Sharing in the moment are grade -six student of the Institution, Oetivia Smalling; and grade-one teacher, Dania Brown.