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Message from the Hon. Bruce Golding, Prime Minister of Jamaica, marking 'Teachers' Day

Release Date: 
Tuesday, May 6, 2008 - 15:15

This year's commemoration of Teachers' Day, takes on even greater significance, as the teaching fraternity and the wider education sector are confronted by graver challenges than those experienced in previous years. Despite these obstacles, our teachers have remained resilient and committed to their task of educating our nation's youths; and for this, they deserve our highest commendations.

The escalating levels of violence and rampant indiscipline in our educational institutions have been of great concern to most of us; and regrettably, mirrors the breakdown in social and moral values taking place in families and communities at large. The academic underperformance of many students is also another challenge with which we contend; and is oftentimes a manifestation of trouble within the home. The resolution to these problems therefore calls for collaboration - not isolation - as our teachers cannot do it alone! We must partner with them, in molding the lives of our young people; and strive to see how best through a participatory approach, we can close this performance gap that exists in many of the schools.

Too many parents take comfort in placing blame for their children's less than satisfactory showing, at the 'feet' of the teachers. They must recognize that the primary responsibility of ensuring the wholesome development of their children rests in their 'hands.' Do not expect the teachers to be surrogate parents - parenting is your charge!

Education plays a crucial role in the sustained growth and development of any nation; and is one of the vehicles through which Jamaica will be transformed from one of poverty into one of prosperity. This highlights just how valuable our teachers are to nation building.

As we mark 'Teachers Day,' I would like to extend my appreciation to our teachers - many of whom have placed service above self. This Day in no way adequately represents the magnitude of your contribution, but nevertheless, allows us the opportunity to salute your sterling work.

I encourage my fellow Jamaicans to work 'hand in hand' with our teachers, in securing a brighter future for our children, because in so doing, a more prosperous future is achieved for all.

 

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