The Jamaica Association for the Deaf (JAD) has launched its Jamaica Sign Language (JSL) Grammar Curriculum Learning Management System (LMS).


This allows teachers, parents and deaf and hard-of-hearing students to access digitised educational content associated with the JSL grammar curriculum, as well as access to other education resources.


The system was launched during the close-out ceremony for the Partnership for Literacy Enhancement for the Deaf (PLED) Project, held on Wednesday (February 3), at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in Kingston.


The LMS is comprised of JSL glossary, JSL grammar curriculum (levels one to two), vocabulary building tests, word games and courses for students. It also provides an introduction to the JSL grammar curriculum for teachers, as well as academic JSL, bilingual strategies and community JSL.


Education, Youth and Information Minister, Hon. Fayval Williams, in her address at the ceremony, said the LMS has been reviewed by the Ministry’s Curriculum and Special Education Units.


“The Curriculum Unit and Special Education Unit have both reviewed the curriculum at various stages of development and have approved it as a complementary curriculum to the National Standards Curriculum,” she noted.


Mrs. Williams said the introduction of the LMS comes at a critical time as the Ministry increases efforts to create an inclusive education sector through greater use of digital technology.


“With the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the move towards online learning after the closure of regular school for most institutions, the Learning Management System has taken on greater significance,” she added.


The LMS, which is a component of the PLED project, aims to increase the literacy levels of deaf and hard-of-hearing children in all schools for the deaf.


Project Manager, PLED, Tisha Ewen Smith, told JIS News the customised JSL grammar curriculum LMS is a breakthrough in facilitating effective teaching and learning of the deaf and hard of hearing, as it also provides a video-based learning platform.


“It is a learning management system that is deaf friendly and that is awesome, because many systems cannot be accessed by the deaf because of communication issues. The system allows teachers of the deaf to go on and teach JSL grammar curriculum and have the children respond and be assessed, all in JSL,” she said.


The Project Manager said the LMS was designed by ThinkWeb Limited.


Funding of US$2.5 million is provided by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implementation is done by JAD.


PLED represents a collaborative effort of the major providers of Deaf Education in Jamaica – Jamaica Association for the Deaf (JAD), Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf (CCCD), and Jamaica Christian School for the Deaf (JCSD).