Tue | Jun 22, 2021

Education Minister wants more fathers to fulfil role

Published:Friday | October 30, 2020 | 2:29 PM
Minister of Education, Fayval Williams (file photo)

The National Parent Support Commission (NPSC), an agency of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, has issued a call for fathers to become more involved in the lives of their children.  

The pleas were made during the launch of National Parent Month, to be observed in November, under the theme ‘Fathers Rise, Lead and be Wise!’. 

Chief Executive Officer of the NPSC, Kaysia Kerr, said the theme came about from a parent village in western Jamaica, where all the fathers the team interacted with, had upwards of eight children. 

“Fathers you need to accept that the children’s growth and development is your responsibility. You must take active steps to ensure that you’re part of that nurturing and development of your child...This is a call to action, stand up with the woman who has birthed your child. Make sure you provide spiritual guidance, make sure you teach your children the importance of waiting - not everything must be now,” she said.  

To celebrate parent month, over 500 schools will be targeted for virtual parenting education sessions. Three regional workshops will also be conducted. 

Minister of Education, Fayval Williams, commended the NPSC for the work they have done since COVID-19 began impacting Jamaica. 

Thirty-six parent support helplines became operational in April, to offer psychosocial care to parents across the island. Just under 650 counselling sessions have been conducted, as well as 95 parenting workshops, reaching approximately 25,000 parents. 

“At the best of times, parenting can be a big challenge and these are far from normal times,” Williams remarked. 

She added that to often parenting is seen as the primary responsibility of mothers and children grow up yearning for the love, support and guidance of their fathers.

Williams reasoned that studies continue to point to the negative impact that absentee parenting has on children.

“Parents, I’m calling on you to encourage their dreams by nurturing their strengths, gifts and talents, in order to assist them in creating future aspirations,” the education minister appealed.

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