Tablets to boost learning at Haile Selassie High
Jodi-Ann Gilpin, Gleaner Writer
THE STRESS of photocopying books and poor Internet access will be a thing of the past at the Haile Selassie High School in Kingston, as students on Monday received tablets as part of the Government's thrust to improve learning in schools.
Principal of the school, Lorenzo Ellis who was speaking with The Gleaner following the Tablets in Schools pilot project handover ceremony, said all students will receive their devices by today.
Ellis expressed gratitude for the teamwork that was displayed by his staff and the Government, adding that the number one objective would be to improve the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) passes.
"We always had textbooks, but at some point, there was always the problem with students not having enough material. We also had issues with Internet access. Students had to be leaving classes to go to the library, which sometimes posed a problem. The fact that we have the e-books on the tablets, we know that gap will be filled," he said.
"We are looking at setting new targets in CSEC. We are on the Ministry's (Education) Operation Turnaround programme and because of the investment in the tablet initiative we have to reset our target. This will be our number one priority," Ellis told The Gleaner.
He also stressed that despite the obstacles, the staff will be ensuring that students fulfil their purpose.
Committed to the cause
"In a couple of months to a year, both students and teachers should have a full grasp of their devices. There will be major improvements in research and the overall attitude of the children. There are many hurdles, but we are committed to the cause of our children," he declared.
Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller, who was guest speaker at the event, urged students and staff to work hard at improving CSEC passes. She also stressed that rural and inner city schools should be priority.
"I am proud of your achievements thus far, but we need more," Simpson Miller said.
"We need to see the passes, and we want students to achieve their fullest potential because I not only know, but I am an example that your background does not define your destiny. I believe that this school can rise to the top," she said.
"I love the popular schools and I have no problem when they excel, but we must give priority to the rural schools and get them up to a satisfactory standard because this Government is committed to improving the standard of living of all Jamaicans," Simpson Miller charged.