Training for more than 12,000 public- and private-school teachers gets underway this week as the Ministry of Education Youth and Information (MOEYI) prepares for the roll-out of the new curriculum for primary and secondary schools.
The National Standards Curriculum (NSC) replaces the Revised Primary Curriculum (RPC) and the National Curriculum for Grades 7-9, formerly referred to as the Reform of Secondary Education (ROSE).
Beginning today, teachers from the ministry's regions one (Kingston and St Andrew) and two (Portland, St Mary and St Thomas) will be involved in training workshops at schools throughout the regions. Training for teachers in the remaining four regions will continue next week through to early August.
This year, the training will target primary-level educators who teach grades 1 and 4 and secondary-level teachers who cater to grades 7-9.
Training for the remainder of the country's teaching cohort will take place during the summer of 2017.
The workshops form part of efforts to ensure that the country's teachers are au fait with the objectives, principles and methodologies associated with the NSC which will be offered from grade 1 at the primary level to grade 9 at the secondary level.
After grade nine, students are expected to transition into programmes that prepare them for the various external examinations, including those offered by the Caribbean Examinations Council, City and Guilds, and the National Vocational Qualification of Jamaica. In addition, students at the upper-secondary level will benefit from offerings in the Career Advancement Programme.
The introduction of the NSC places Jamaica among the growing list of countries that have been revising their curriculum offerings in response to the rapid pace at which technology and knowledge continue to change.
The new curriculum will require teachers to embrace new methods of teaching and learning and should result in improved outcomes for the country's children. The MOEYI is confident that the NSC will be effective in preparing Jamaica's children for life in the 21st century and beyond.
Two new disciplines have been added to the NSC, namely civics and resource and technology. Changes have also been effected to the science, social studies and Spanish programmes. Mathematics and language arts will receive separate focus.