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Crawford helping Portland students to find right CSEC formula

Published:Tuesday | April 30, 2019 | 12:00 AMGareth Davis Sr/Gleaner Writer
Damion Crawford teaching mathematics to students at Port Antonio High School on Saturday.

Port Antonio, Portland:

Opposition senator and People’s National Party (PNP) caretaker for Eastern Portland, Damion Crawford, devoted his time on the weekend to teach dozens of students from different high schools in the parish who are preparing to sit mathematics in the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations.

Dressed in a grey T-shirt and red sweat pants, the dreadlocked politician made his first stop at Titchfield High School before heading to Port Antonio High School.

“Knowledge is the only thing you can share and still have it,” commented Crawford.

“Based on the love that the people have shown me here and the appreciation and acceptance, I decided that I would show some gratitude by doing the classes here as well. Right now, the response has been good, as there were over a hundred kids in attendance at Titchfield, while more than 60 students turned out at Port Antonio High School.”

Crawford, noting that mathematics is much feared among students nationally, said the subject is easy but has to be simplified to help students understand the concepts.

He said that there are many students who acquire four or five subjects but are unable to attend university or pursue certain programmes as they struggle to find a successful formula to ace the subject.

Crawford, who was unsuccessful in his bid to become member of parliament for East Portland earlier this month, said his maths carnival will continue this week.

“I will be teaching mathematics at Happy Grove and Fair Prospect High later this week. All of Section 2 – including functions and relations, geometry, and trigonometry – [which] usually create challenges, but we are also trying to give all the tricks of the trade for the multiple-choice exam so that they can do it without a calculator. That’s one of the difficulties that technology has created for most.”

He said that part of the plan is to also build greater awareness among students about how mathematics shapes everyday life.

“The usual cry from students is ‘How does this apply to my life?’ and it does apply to their life. Half of bread is a fraction. When I can see people down the line who I have assisted – police, teachers and lawyers – the feeling is great. I am a firm believer in education, which is the only vehicle to alleviate poverty, “Crawford concluded. “I am hoping to have better grades from students in CSEC maths at the end of it all.”

Crawford, who lectures in marketing and tourism management at The University of the West Indies, Mona, previously taught mathematics at St George’s College and Norman Manley High School.