Leadership Development Spurs Transformation in Rural Schools

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Morale in some rural schools has increased dramatically over the last five years as more students believe the school leadership has demonstrated better care for them. This was revealed at an ‘Evaluation of Findings’ presentation for the Centres of Excellence programme, held at the Mona Visitor’s Lodge on Friday, April 11, 2014.

The Centres of Excellence is an initiative of the Mutual Building Societies Foundation and was established in 2008 by the Victoria Mutual Building Society and the Jamaica National Building Society. The Building Societies invested a total of $100 million as part of the project. The funds facilitated improvements in significant areas of six rural non-traditional high schools:

  • Use of data to inform teaching and learning practices
  • Teaching methodologies
  • Accountability at all levels of school management

Additionally, a business development project was added to the programme to encourage entrepreneurship among students. The improvements inspired a transformation in attitudes and behaviour among administrators, educators and students alike which also positively impacted their wider community.

The main objectives of the Centres of Excellence programme are to foster the development of quality education and social transformation through leadership development. The six schools evaluated participated in the programme between 2008 and 2013.

 

Above: Chairman of the Mutual Building Societies Foundation, Jeanne Robinson-Fraser, gives an encouraging word to a student from Godfrey Stewart High School.

Below: Chairman of Victoria Mutual (2nd left), Michael McMorris, presents Minister of Education (3rd left), the Honourable Ronald Thwaites, with a copy of the Centres of Excellence Evaluation of Findings report, at a ceremony held at the Mona Visitor’s Lodge recently, in which the results were unveiled. Looking on are Earl Jarrett, General Manager, Jamaica National Building Society and Jeanne Robinson-Fraser, Chairman of the Mutual Building Societies Foundation.

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