50 youths get another chance at train­ing

Jamaica Gleaner - - ENTERTAINMENT - Carl Gilchrist Gleaner Writer ru­ral@glean­erjm.com

Vice-prin­ci­pal Bovette O’Con­nor Pow­ell en­cour­aged the par­ents to part­ner with the school to en­sure the stu­dents had proper bath­room fa­cil­i­ties.

“The teach­ers and stu­dents have worked re­ally hard, and we must also com­mend them for their ef­forts. Th­ese stu­dents (grades four to six) are ex­cited be­cause we re­ha­bil­i­tated the lower school bath­room, and to see that theirs have now been im­proved makes them re­ally happy,” said O’Con­nor Pow­ell.

Sev­eral par­ents have com­mended the school for tak­ing the ini­tia­tive in­stead of wait­ing on the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion for as­sis­tance, not­ing that the school’s pop­u­la­tion of more than 900 stu­dents will have de­cent fa­cil­i­ties to use. ST ANN’S BAY, St Ann: AP­PROX­I­MATELY 50 young peo­ple in St Ann, be­tween 17 and 30 years old, who might have dropped out of school or are with­out aca­demic qual­i­fi­ca­tion, re­cently got a chance to im­prove them­selves.

The Mar­cus Gar­vey Youth In­for­ma­tion Cen­tre in St Ann’s Bay, in part­ner­ship with HEART Trust/NTA, en­rolled them in the Na­tional Un­at­tached Youth Pro­gramme and ex­posed them to a pre-tech­nol­ogy pro­gramme, which ended last week.

This pro­gramme, which was aimed at im­prov­ing the liveli­hoods of youths across Ja­maica, sought to in­crease stu­dents lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy lev­els so that they would be able to pass the HEART Trust en­try exam.

Dur­ing the 20-week pro­gramme, par­tic­i­pants were en­gaged in re­me­dial math­e­mat­ics and English, ICT, en­trepreneur­ship, per­sonal de­vel­op­ment, life skills train­ing through creativ­ity, mu­sic, sports, 4H, per­form­ing arts and vis­ual arts.

In ad­di­tion, the group went through ex­ten­sive per­sonal de­vel­op­ment in­ter­ven­tions, which in­cluded con­flict res­o­lu­tion, stress man­age­ment, per­sonal hy­giene, ca­reer de­vel­op­ment, dress and de­port­ment, in­ter­view­ing skills, sex­ual and re­pro­duc­tive health and goal set­ting.


“They went through a se­ries of mock in­ter­views which pro­vided feed­back aimed at pre­par­ing them for the world of work and ad­vanc­ing in their ca­reer fields of choice,” ex­plained Anisa Wil­son-Smith, se­nior youth em­pow­er­ment of­fi­cer and re­gional man­ager in the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion, Youth and In­for­ma­tion.

She added: “The group was also given the op­por­tu­nity to par­tic­i­pate in a num­ber of out­ings geared to­wards their per­sonal de­vel­op­ment.”

The youths grabbed the op­por­tu­nity and rep­re­sented them­selves well through­out the pro­gramme, show­ing re­mark­able im­prove­ment in English and math­e­mat­ics.

At the start of the pro­gramme, the lit­er­acy level in math­e­mat­ics was be­low the ex­pected av­er­age to pass the HEART en­trance exam, with only five per cent of the group show­ing they were ca­pa­ble.

At the end of the pro­gramme, it was es­ti­mated that 53 per cent of the group were ready to sit the en­trance exam.

Re­gard­ing English, more than 40 per cent of the group showed lit­er­acy level for English be­low the ex­pected av­er­age. How­ever, this climbed to 80 per cent by the end of the pro­gramme.

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