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LETTER OF THE DAY - Pay more attention to early-childhood education

Published:Wednesday | September 7, 2011 | 12:00 AM
Andrew Holness, education minister.


For too long, there have been many pronouncements about what will be done to tackle the numerous problems that exist in our education sector.

At the beginning of each new school year, various education ministers over the past decades address the nation using all sorts of fancy jargon about changes to the system and implementation of new procedures as well as making vows to hold people accountable.

One of the main reasons our education sector has failed so miserably, and will continue to do so, is because of the lack of focus on early-childhood education. Enough is not being done to change this anytime soon.

The conditions under which teachers (many of them pre-trained) work are appalling and leave a lot to be desired. This is the level at which we need specialists in the classroom, in order to identify children with learning disabilities and take corrective action swiftly.

No cost can be too high to have this done. If students don't get a solid foundation at the early-childhood stage, they are often doomed to fail.

The recent cut in the education ministry's budget is indicative of the rampant disregard for the need to improve our education system. The focus can't be on primary and secondary education, as is the case now. As long as our governments neglect early-childhood education, we will continue to be a failing nation with an abundance of illiterates.


Lydford, St Ann