Education sector in need of an “urgent transformation” - former Education Minister

Former Education Minister Maxine Henry Wilson says the country's education sector is in need of urgent transformation to halt the downward spiral which cannot be blamed on the Covid-19 pandemic.

Henry Wilson says there is need for firm decisions to bring the sector back on track.

She raised the concern about the state of the education sector in light of the report from the Auditor General of  the transfer of $124 million by the Ministry of Education to the Joint Committee for Tertiary Education under questionable circumstances.

The former Education Minister  told Radio Jamaica News that, while the pandemic has caused disruption to teaching and learning, the education sector was being poorly managed.

“I really think its time for us to get back to some fundamental questions about education. I think we are blaming COVID for aspects of our behavior and performance and the pitchy patchy way to address things. We need to sit down and examine - what is the consequence of COVID.”

The former education minister also called on  Prime Minister Andrew Holness should update the public on the status of the report from the Education Transformation Commission.

The commission is led by Professor Orlando Patterson.

My understanding was that the report would have been in in March - then I heard June. I think we need to find out where that is - because it is a guidepost as to where we need to go,” she said. 

In June, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said the report from the Education Transformation Commission, which has undertaken a comprehensive review and assessment of  the education system, would be postponed until September.

The Prime Minister said commission members had requested more time.

The commission has already missed two other deadlines.

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