Continued social progress in Jamaica will be based on an education
system that is greatly efficient and this efficiency must have a strong link to
democracy and meritocracy. As a country we have made great steps to democratize
education at all levels and this has been tied to greater steps to democratize the society. Educational democratization is based on the relationship and
interaction of four main interconnected components.
These components are: the democratization of educational
activities and access to education, the democratization of education content,
infusing the human element as it relates to the functioning of educational
institutions as well as extra curricular activities, and last but not least the
interconnectedness and democratization of education with the other areas of life.
The task at hand is a big task and it requires the
cooperation of all stakeholders. Historically teachers have often been used as the
scapegoat for the failures in the education system, however, research tells us
that education works best when all the stakeholders play their part and honour
their commitment to education.
The job of the government is to ensure they establish good
policy and direction as well as provide adequate funding. The job of the
teachers is to ensure they deliver the best outcomes for students and the job
of school leadership is to ensure that schools deliver on their remit. The last
two groups that are key are the parents and students. The government can create
the best policy and provide the best funding, however, if parents don’t play
their role then the system will struggle to deliver on great outcomes for
students. Students have a right to an education, however, we often forget to
remind students that they have a responsibility to ensure they position
themselves and cooperate with schools and their parents in order to access this
Education is the best way to unlock opportunities for the
citizens of any society as well as to unlock financial success and wider
achievements, hence why the work on the democratization of education has to
continue. We must celebrate our gains and seeks further ways to build on what
we have achieved thus far.