Excerpt from Jamaica Observer column - 3 April 2017
The recent finale of the four-year Education Enrichment in 104 primary schools throughout Jamaica, demonstrates the power of partnership. The Ministry of Education, Digicel Foundation and the USAID came together to create enrichment rooms in these schools, targeting the slower learners with the use of information technology and colourful visuals.
As USAID Mission Director Maura Barry Boyle noted, “The programme has impacted over 43,000 students, 6,000 parents and more than 200 teachers and principals combined. We are proud of this achievement. Due to our collective effort, Jamaica’s literacy rate at the Grade 4 level now exceeds the Ministry’s national target of 85%.”
State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Information and Youth Floyd Green, remarked on the 99 Parent Places where parents are trained to assist their children’s learning. “The Parent Places fulfil a dual role by providing a space for parents … allowing them to have a physical presence in the school.”
At the event, we were impressed with the various learning aids on display, including the innovative BookFusion which gives free access to children’s books online. Technology is opening new paths for our children, and it is significant that slow-learning boys have responded positively to the new methods in the enrichment centres.
- Jean Lowrie-Chin (honoured to be Chairman of the Digicel Jamaica Foundation)