JTA Golden Torch Awardees for 2019

JTA Golden Torch Awards 2019

Publication Date: 
Monday, July 22, 2019

JTA GOLDEN Torch awards 2019 holds true to name

On Tuesday, July 9, the JTA assisted by its usual sponsors, Tip friendly Society and the JTA Cooperative Credit Union hosted the 26th ceremony for the presentation of the JTA's Golden Torch Award at the Jamaica Pegasus in Kingston.

130 persons who would have given 35 years or more service to education were awarded.

Addressing the ceremony, JTA President Dr. Garth Anderson pointed out that the JTA is fully aware of the yeoman service given by those being awarded and pause to celebrate the moment with them.

Added Dr. Anderson,” There can be no overstating as to the import of teachers and quality education, as we a re the curators of developing a wholesome society facilitated through producing citizens who have the skills, knowledge and values to  equip them to function effectively in the 21st century global community in which we live”.

And Dr Anderson reminded the teachers that they are the shapers of lives and the destiny for many. As such he urged the educators to continue to see it as their task to liberate the thinking of those under our influence to go beyond the threshold of their minds.

He said “ You all have touched so many lives and as a result your influence will live on for generations to come”.

Meanwhile Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Karl Samuda commended the teachers for their years of service and also reminded them of the awesome task that they have and the influence they daily impose on the impressionable minds of their charges in the schools islandwide.

Said the Minister: “ the influence you have on the future development of those children….its an awful responsibility”.

He said as Minister he has adopted a non confrontational approach so as to ensure that he has the full support of the nation’s teachers as he tries to implement strategies to better the education sector.

“I come here to work throu8gh a process of collaboration and cooperation  in search of a better understanding  of education as delivered in Jamaica is all about” added the Minister .

Speaking about the recent PEP results, the minister lamented what he said was the wide disparity which still exists among a large population of the nation’s schools. According to him, if Jamaica is to be the great nation the majority wants it to be, then there has to be a change.

Minister Samuda said the focus of the ministry will be focusing on ensuring that every child gets an equal opportunity to start together and to  be exposed to the same quality of training.

He said, “I am not satisfied that some children are encouraged to take a route which does not equate with their natural abilities but rather because there was not enough preparation for another route.”

The Minister says that how the current system is skewed, it bipasses children who could become inventors, doctors, engineers and scientists and suggested that the emphasis needs to change.

For his part Opposition spokesman on Education and Training Reverend Ronald Thwaites said the JTA must be commended for the effort it continues to make annually to pull people together to honour and recognize them.

Said Rev. Thwaites, “If were going to have transformational rather than incremental change in Jamaica and in the education system, it is going to have to rise from the base of experience in our schools from the collective wisdom of teachers, administrators and advocates in education “.

He reminded that change should not come from the top down, but rather from the educators who would submit to their accountability to the nation and showcase their wisdom that there is likely to be the transformed system all desire.

In the picture:
L-R Front Row
Paulette Battick-Smith, Christine DeSilva-Campbell, Georgia Waugh Richards, IPP of JTA, Dr. Garth Anderson, JTA President, Mr Owen Speid, President Elect, JTA, Sharon Reid, and Jean Romans

Back Row left to right
Ann Marie Hayles, Paulette Kennedy, Everton Walters, Judith Hutchinson and Clova Wright.These recipients were specially awarded for having given 41 years of service to Education in their respective schools islandwide.


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