Strategic Plan for the Reform of Teacher Education for the 21st Century
The Strategic Plan for the Reform of Teacher Education for the 21st Century (the Plan) has been constructed to ensure that learners in Jamaica’s classrooms have the best chances for personal, workplace and future success through the educational experiences with which they are provided. Since the teacher is the centre and heart of teaching and learning, ensuring that teachers are prepared carefully and thoroughly according to current international thinking and best practices in the classroom is crucial to creating the best opportunities for learner success. The purpose of this Plan is to reform teacher education so that pre-service teachers enter the classroom prepared to offer teaching and learning “fit for purpose” in the 21st century.
The preparation of this Strategic Plan was not done in isolation. There were several important preliminary activities that contributed to its development. These included:
- the commissioning of “A Needs Assessment and Front End Analysis of Teachers’ Colleges” to explore what was needed to strengthen quality assurance in the operation of teachers’ colleges (submitted June, 2015)
- the Jamaica Tertiary Education Commission’s (J-TEC) mandating the member of its staff responsible for teachers’ colleges in mid-2015 to travel as part of a study tour to Malaysia to examine that country’s teacher education system and determine whether there was advice and/or lessons to be learned for the Jamaican system.
- J-TEC’s constitution of a Technical Working Group (TWG) in August 2015 comprising members with expertise ranging across several fields related to teacher education who could contribute a variety of perspectives to the challenge of drafting the strategy and implementation plan for reforming teacher education
- through the ESTP, the Ministry of Education’s recruitment of a consultant with expertise in teacher education planning, design and analysis to support the work of the TWG in February, 2016.
The drafting of the Strategic Plan, the accompanying Implementation Plan and the proposed policies to support the Plan are ultimately the responsibility of the J-TEC TWG. However, the consultant meets regularly with the TWG to seek its input, discuss her work and report the progress of the drafting of the Strategic Plan.
Conducted by the Office of Curriculum Development and Evaluation (OCDE) at The University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech).
The findings from the visit were presented to the TWG for discussion.