Discussions surrounding an English programme in Jamaica were initiated by the Ministry of Education and the Jamaica Teaching Council, which sought assistance from the British Council with the aim of improving the teaching of English in their schools.
The result of these initial talks produced the Jamaica Language Project. The aim of this project was to clarify the English Language requirements for improvements in pupils’ performance, as well as to identify the particular needs of both trainers and students, and to plan or implement training schedules for training English specialists.
The results from that Jamaica Language Project as well as the growing urge to advance the learning of English with the various stakeholders encouraged another round of discussions which will prove beneficial to all parties concerned.
About the Partnership
British Council Jamaica is establishing partnerships with key stakeholders for a sustainable English offering in Jamaica.
The Ministry of Education, the Jamaica Teaching Council and the University of Technology are currently partnering with the British Council. This was preceded by several discussions held last week Thursday. Discussions were based on the need for both consultation and products to assist in the delivery and use of English Language.
The facilitators of these meetings were:
- Dr. Winsome Gordon, Executive Director of the Jamaica Teaching Council
- Dr. Nova Gordon-Bell, Head of the Department for Education and Liberal Studies at the University of Technology
- Mrs. Martha Corbett-Baugh, Education Officer in the Foreign Languages Unit in the Ministry of Education
Essentially the current needs within each organisation are for training and development opportunities for both pre-service and in-service English teachers; as well as training for language practice and methodology for students and new learners of English or foreign nationals with the further aim of offering certification for the participants.
The relationship amongst all partners is expected to be on going, and this initial round of meetings were held specifically to:
- Assess the current needs of each organisation in relation to English Language
- Establish the type of products and services needed
- Negotiate a plan regarding the programme`s financing
This partnership in English will be funded mutually with the possibility of funds being outsourced by international donor organisations.
Although discussions are recent, work is expected to begin by March of next year between the University of Technology and the British council.
The British council is world renowned for developing a wide range of high-end English products and services tailor-made to meet the needs of those organisations requesting them, and has mandated itself to offer global certification to anyone using their products and services.