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Tertiary education system being restructured

Published:Sunday | July 29, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Senator Ruel Reid, minister of education, youth and information.

Minister of Education, Youth, and Information, Senator Ruel Reid, said the tertiary education system was being restructured in order to meet the demands of the 21st century and beyond.

He said the objective was to better enable the sector to "lead the way in positioning the rest of the education system to prepare for the future as well as retrofitting and realigning its programmes to meet the needs of the labour market over the short and long term."

"This will herald a change in the formulation of the entire sector (and) will include the re-organisation of the governance arrangements for oversight, funding from government, provision of grants, scholarships and bursaries for students and reorganisation of individual institutions in keeping with the mandate and needs of the sector," Reid outlined.

He was addressing the University Council of Jamaica's Strategic Planning Retreat held on July 26 at the Iberostar Rose Hall Suites Hotel in Montego Bay, St James.

Reid informed that a draft policy has been prepared, outlining the necessary steps towards the establishment of a higher-education commission that will provide oversight of the sector.

"This arrangement will see a full restructuring of the bodies that currently provide oversight and will also call for new legislation," he indicated.

As part of the reorganisation, the sector will be referred to as the 'higher-education' system and will incorporate academic, vocational, professional education and training, as well as lifelong learning in a more comprehensive way.

Reid further informed that efforts will be made to broaden the appeal of the various institutions to better attract the interest of the international community.

"The system shall be internationalised through the inclusion and integration of regional and global perspectives and dimensions into its systems, policies, curricula, and processes," he noted.