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There is hardly any dispute that children have to grow in a safe and healthy environment if they have to face a future full of challenges. Early childhood is considered very critical in this process and lays the foundation for the child’s progress through the subsequent stages. The Early Childhood Commission (ECC) has organised a number of programmes on Labour Day on May 23, adopting the theme ‘Child safety… It’s you, it’s me, it’s all ah we!’.
Basic Schools Need to be Supported
Ms. Trisha Williams-Singh, the Chairperson of the Early Childhood Commission has sent out a request to the public to channel part of the resources they plan to spend on Labour Day, towards supporting basic schools. These are institutions that strive to provide education up to what is known as Standard 8. Standard 12 is the highest standard in schooling. As schools provide the right environment to study and achieve the standard, they are certified by the ECC.
Many Schools Yet to Reach the Standard
It is with the objective of encouraging the remaining schools across the island that are yet to obtain the certification, that the ECC decided on the theme ‘Child safety… It’s you, it’s me, it’s all ah we!’. The idea is to create awareness among all Jamaicans that helping children grow naturally and in a secure environment is a responsibility that rests on each and every citizen. Children are the future of Jamaica and the onus of ensuring their future is bright is upon the current generation. It is, in a way, giving back to your country what it gave you. The funds that the ECC Chairperson is looking for from the Labour Day contributions would go towards the upgrading of the schools currently lagging behind.
The standards the schools are expected to achieve relate to providing ‘safe indoor and outdoor environments for children’. These may include proper fencing, fire-fighting and other safety equipment. These are the areas in which the ECC wants the public to help raise funds.
The objective of ECC is to ultimately lift all the schools across Jamaica to reach Standard 12. With this objective in mind, there are projects being undertaken in practically all parishes and a detailed list of schools targeted for the project has been released. Within Kingston, Galilee Basic School; St. Andrew, End Time Basic School; St. Thomas, Rowlandsfield Primary and Infant School are the institutions identified.