Sat | Jan 20, 2018

Let’s educate our way out of poverty

Published:Wednesday | January 25, 2017 | 11:11 PM


It is time that we face the realities of the World and take the necessary steps to make sure that we are able to function and prosper going forward as a truly independent nation.

We have been too dependent on the USA and Europe.

Since independence our productivity index has been declining, our growth index only reflects an increase because of the increase in population and not an increase in worker output based on productivity.

Donald Trump is now the President of the USA and enormous amount of uncertainty exists with regard to policies that he may introduce going forward. For example, will he make it difficult for Jamaicans in the USA to continue to send remittances to Jamaica? Will he make it laborious for Americans to travel to Jamaica for vacation? Will he make it more difficult for Jamaican to migrate to the USA?

In order to buttress our people against these uncertainties, compulsory free education is a must for all Jamaicans from age five to 20 years old.

Free education refers to education that is funded through taxation or charitable organisations rather than tuition funding. In this context, I am referring to funding through taxation.

As a country, we must be deliberate in our effort to educate our children. To deprive a child of education is child abuse, and it is in our reach to fix it.

How do we fix it?

It has been reported that corruption, and waste cost the cost the taxpayers over one hundred and sixty billion per annum ($160B per annum). Therefore, compulsory free education is within our reach.

Now, please allow me to say something about the teachers.

I don't subscribe to the old adage that great teachers are born. I think that great teachers are trained. The best teachers are made, not born.