JIS: Students on the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH) will benefit from a rental initiative for literature books in the upcoming school year, which begins in September.
Education, Youth and Information Minister, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, made the announcement at the end of a two-day international conference on Educational Leadership and Management, at The Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, on March 3.
The conference, which was organised by the Institute of Educational Administration and Leadership, Jamaica, (IEAL-J), was held under the theme ‘Educational Leadership for Sustainability: Current Realities, Future Possibilities’.
In an interview with JIS News, Mr. Reid noted that the rental scheme is geared towards bolstering support to those students on the PATH programme.
“We found that one of the big needs on the book list was literature, because of the significant cost of the books,” he said.
“It is not yet on the rental system. There is no sense in offering rental books for every other subject and not literature, when you may be required to get three books for a year, which would run you $10,000,” the Minister added.
He said emphasis will be placed on PATH students to ensure that “they are really taken care of, as 50 per cent of the student population is on PATH.”
Mr. Reid said that those parents who can support their children in the purchase of literature books should do so.
“I don’t want to provide rental books for persons who can easily purchase them, when you have the very poor who cannot afford it. They are the ones who need to be lifted out of poverty through education,” the Minister said.
Turning to the conference, which focused on educational leadership to ensure inclusive, equitable and quality education for all, Mr. Reid noted that teachers and principals are demonstrating leadership based on a framework of accountability.
This, the Minister said, is evident in so-called failing schools, which have turned around.
Meanwhile, President of the IEAL-J, Professor Paul Miller, said teachers should be given every opportunity to demonstrate leadership.
“Not only does it build their capacity, but it helps with succession planning, and I think it is down to head teachers or principals to create spaces for every teacher in the classroom to demonstrate leadership, to build their capacity and, therefore, to contribute to the development of the school,” he said.
CAPTION: Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid (left), listens to Professor the Hon. Errol Morrison, on the final day of a two-day international conference on Educational Leadership and Management, at The Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, on March 3.