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390 teachers resign in just months, Education Ministry reveals

Karl Samuda
 
The Ministry of Education has revealed that 390 public sector teachers have resigned since September last year.
 
Karl Samuda, Minister with responsibility for Education, called a media briefing Thursday afternoon after Radio Jamaica News earlier reported that the shortage of teachers is worsening.
 
The Jamaica Teachers Association (JTA) on Wednesday told Radio Jamaica that students preparing for exams will be affected. 
 
Mr. Samuda admitted that the high level of teacher migration has been impacting the Education Ministry.
 
However, he said there is no need for alarm as measures, such as the re-engagement of retired teachers, are being taken to address the situation. 
 
He said additional measures including the engagement of final year student-teachers from accredited institution, schools redeploying staff and or increasing their teaching session, merging smaller classes to reduce teacher demand, and the increased use of ICT through the videotaping of lessons, have also been implemented to address the issue.  
 
The minister said part-time teachers have been hired where trained individuals may not be able to commit to full-time engagement. In addition, teachers are sharing experiences through the school twinning programme, which currently consists of more than 50 schools. 
 
Mr. Samuda said the ministry is also implementing a voluntary relocation strategy for teachers to address the shortage in some areas.
 
He noted that teachers are being redeployed from All-Age and Junior High Schools to assist at the high school level. 
 
The minister added that schools will be allowed to recruit pre-trained graduates and individuals with at least a first degree in the areas of expertise that are short in supply. 
 
 


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