Lessons from the transformation of the Jamaican education system



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School of Education, UWI, St. Augustine


This paper presents an overview of the implementation of the transformation of the Jamaican public education system, by identifying some of the challenges faced and successes realized since the Education Transformation Team (ETT) was established in April 2005. Armed with 133 goals, objectives, and activities, the ETT was charged with the responsibility of providing the leadership for the transformation process. The six areas identified for transformation were (a) Curriculum, Teaching and Learning; (b) Governance and Management; (c) Facilities and Infrastructure; (d) Stakeholder Participation; (e) Finance; and (f) Behaviour Transformation. The challenges faced thus far include mobilizing the necessary funding to support the programme, implementing a structure that will ensure transparency and independence, involving critical stakeholders in the process, and pursuing those goals that will have a significant impact on expected outcomes. Areas of definite progress include the rehabilitation of the infrastructure and the creation of the broad organizational framework for the devolution of power from the Ministry of Education to regional authorities. Based on the experience of the transformation process thus far, the paper advances recommendations and alternative approaches that could assist other regional states to avoid pitfalls in the transformation of their education systems. The evaluation of the transformation process after 20 months of implementation in Jamaica would also benefit from the issues discussed and positions advanced


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Educational organization, Educational reform, Jamaica


Hutton, D. M. (2008). Lessons from the transformation of the Jamaican education system. In L. Quamina-Aiyejina (Ed.), Reconceptualising the agenda for education in the Caribbean: Proceedings of the 2007 Biennial Cross-Campus Conference in Education, April 23-26, 2007, School of Education, UWI, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago (pp. 383-394). St. Augustine, Trinidad: School of Education, UWI.