…on Govt auditsIt could be just a matter of serendipity…but more folks would probably say “there is a God!!” Your Eyewitness is referring, of course, to the Muckraker finally accepting (and publishing!!) that the audit from the number one crusader for “transparency” – Chris Ram – was fatally flawed. For what? Lack of transparency!!! And in the same edition the Muckraker carries the umpteenth plea from David Hinds of the WPA – the accusation that the Government is dragging its feet on taking action (read “jailing”) against all the malfeasors – all PPP, of course.Well, now Hinds and all those wondering why there haven’t been more prosecutions for bilking (and “siphoning”) billions and billions of dollars from the national treasury – as most of the ones given the task of conducting the audits claimed – have been offered ONE reason. THE AUDITS WERE GAMED TO BEGIN WITH!!!! Take the revelation trumpeted by the Muckraker: Chris Ram was given the lucrative contract (part of the 3 million doled out!) to examine the books of the GNBA.Ram, however, failed to reveal one crucial fact – that one of his clients was the Stabber News which was one of the major players in the direct broadcasting arena!! So – surprise! surprise! – Ram didn’t even mention SN in his “audit” and, therefore, most pertinently that the outfit avowed a whopping M!!! Now if a “big man” like Ram can play so fast and loose with his professional credentials and standards, imagine how low that nonentity vying for his 15 minutes in the limelight – Goolsarran— would sink!!Maybe folks would now revisit Brassington’s exhaustive comments on Goolsarran’s “audit” of NICIL – none of which were incorporated in the “final” release. Not even in a footnote though Goolsarran requested and received the comments!! Any impartial reviewer would conclude after reading both documents that Goolsarran was conducting a hatchet job on Brassington. But why should anyone be surprised? Didn’t Goolsarran and Ram – not to mention the Muckraker – use Brassington as a punching bag for years?The question that should now be asked, is why did the Government give these accountants contracts to audit firms and Government departments they’d been criticising for years? Isn’t such a selection process “outcome determinative”?? What did anyone expect these auditors to do? Reveal findings that showed they were full of it all along?From the Chris Ram revelation, we can now understand the government’s coyness when it comes to charging anyone. Imagine the only persons before the court was because of a PPP official highlighting some discrepancies!What we need is an audit of the audits!! But to prevent an infinite regression of audits, let’s bring in some foreigners.…and paddy selling?A year ago, PM Nagamootoo assured beleaguered rice farmers – reeling from the loss of the 200,000 tonne Venezuelan RICE market – he’d secured new markets from Mexico. He reminded salivating farmers Mexico imports 1 MILLION tonnes of rice annually! Nagamootoo was so persuasive, the Mexicans presumably overlooked their NAFTA commitments to the USA – their major supplier – to “fast track” the necessary approval.Well, your Eyewitness then hoped local farmers didn’t hold their breath. Because we were just informed that “PHYTOSANITARY certification” is still being “pursued”! But somehow everyone in governmental circles still ignores Mexico’s insistence that its eventual goal is not to find markets for our rice, but to “begin the commercialisation” of our production.So what’s “commercialisation” of rice?? Well, that’s grist for another mill – or another Eyewitness exposé! But basically it’s just about advising us to get our (production) act together, domestically.But isn’t this what GRDB was supposed to do with its annual $500M levy on rice exports?…on delegating powerYour Eyewitness hopes Town Clerk King noted how graciously Prezzie passed his mace to PM Nagamootoo. And Minister of State Harmon didn’t boorishly deny him the privileges of the Presidency.See how President Moses glowed when he met business leaders? Now could Sherod Duncan at least get one guard?
A recent visit to areas in the Upper Berbice Region (Region 10) has revealed that the communities are in dire need of improvement in the areas of education, health, agriculture and physical infrastructure for the benefit of youths. The issues were highlighted by Regional Chairman Renis Morian and Vice Chairman Elroy Adolph during a press conference. The region’s leaders stressed that in the area of agriculture, an important point to note is that a community boat which was initially intended to provide assistance for farmers in transporting their produce is presently “parked” and remains non- operable at Sand Hill. Morian said this is the case, even as farmers in the area are suffering tremendously in transporting their produce to be marketed.“What really caught us is that there is a huge boat parked in the Berbice River and it is reported that this boat was built and taken there a week before elections and they’re saying it’s an election gimmick. Whether it’s an election gimmick or not the past Government had removed the boat which had transported persons to New Amsterdam with their agriculture produce. Now we have a huge boat parked there… I am approaching the Office of the President, Ministry of Public Infrastructure, so that that boat… could be put into use. We see it as a boost to enhance agriculture and the movement of persons within the Berbice River,” he stressed.Additionally, it was noted that the boat is missing just one crucial element, however Morian said a diagnostic test needs to be done to ascertain the situation with the said boat.“We’re going to go through the right channel to make sure that that boat is commissioned under the right Ministry. We have millions of dollars in tax payers money lying there…not being used and farmers want to get there produce to market and this is not being done,” he said.In addition, the Regional Chairman said it was observed that there is a huge generator at Muritaro presently parked in the bushes. According to Morian, information received suggests that it has never been in operation but was placed there under the previous Administration. He said he is seeking to have it moved and taken to Linden to be serviced so that it can be beneficial to communities without electricity and solar.Meanwhile, Regional Vice Chairman Adolph said a visit to several schools revealed deplorable washroom facilities, which are out of service. At Sand Hill, he said the teacher’s washroom facility has been out of order for over two years. He added that requests were made for more health personnel to visit the communities since it was highlighted that residents find it is too expensive to travel to New Amsterdam.“The people in the Berbice River are requesting some more help from the Ministry of Health. So we are calling on the Ministry of Health to deliver a little more… We also discovered shortage of drugs… nurses and health workers, doctors if possible need to visit the areas more often… farming is not payable like before because they don’t have transport for [their] produce. When they hire transportation it’s very expensive…so life becomes more difficult everyday for the folks in the Berbice River,” Adolph said. read more
Environmental tax– former AGGovernment could have saved millions of taxpayers’ dollars by avoiding litigation against beverage company SM Jaleel.Last year, the Trinidadian company and its local subsidiary, Guyana BeveragesAttorney General Basil WilliamsInc, had filed proceedings in the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) seeking a refund of the now repealed environmental tax that was paid in Guyana over a seven-year period in light of a CCJ ruling in 2015 in a similar lawsuit filed by Surinamese company Rudisa Beverages.At the time of the announcement, Attorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Basil Williams was adamant in fighting the matter and was confident that Guyana could have won the legal battle against SM Jaleel.“In the Rudisa matter, it was noted that the Government of Guyana did not lead evidence to show that the tax was transferred. We intend to lead such evidence in this case…we are confident that the team of persons we have assembled, to be able to testify before the CCJ on this, questions whether the environmental tax was transferred to the consumers,” Williams had told reporters.However, former Attorney General Anil Nandlall lamented that not only did the Government, on the advice of its Attorney General, waste millions in hiring “experts” and for litigation purposes, it would also lose more funds when it has toFormer Attorney General Anil Nandlalldip into the treasury to refund the beverage giant as ordered by the CCJ.Nandlall, in his weekly column “The Unruly Horse”, said Government, instead of going to the court, should have worked out an out-of-court settlement with SM Jaleel.“A prudent Attorney General, with a sound understanding of the Rudisa’s ruling, would have never contested the SM Jaleel case. He would have recognised, very early, that the CCJ would not depart from its previous ruling lightly and in the Jaleel’s case, there were no exceptional facts for them to do so,” Nandlall outlined.He posited that a “tactful” Attorney General would have approached the company and worked out an amicable resolution, including the payment of a reduced sum and a generous payment plan.According to Nandlall, Government has just opened the floodgates for more lawsuits to come from other beverage companies.“ANSA McAL, GraceKennedy and others are next in line to sue. I have no doubt that the blundering will continue,” he stated, noting that he had received letters from those companies while he was AG.Moreover, the former Attorney General emphasised again that the A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the Alliance For Change (AFC) were to be blamed for the Rudisa case against Guyana in the first place.Nandlall highlighted that before Rudisa filed its claim, then Finance Minister, Dr Ashni Singh, tabled an amendment to the Customs Act to remove the offensive provision contained therein, which ran afoul of the Treaty of Chaguaramas.“I made public that unless this Bill is passed, Guyana will be forced to refund all the taxes levied under this provision of the Customs Act. By this time, I had already received a letter from Rudisa threatening litigation. I made the letter public,” he reminded.Nandlall further reminded, however, that the joint Opposition used every opportunity to dally and when the Bill was eventually debated, they voted it down even though they were aware of the consequences.“By this time, Rudisa filed its claim at the CCJ. I appeared and extracted an undertaking from Rudisa’s lawyers that were the Government able to pass the Bill in a second attempt in the National Assembly, the company will withdraw its claim. As a result, Rudisa’s lawyers were magnanimous enough to join me in an application to adjourn the matter for a period of three months to facilitate the Government of Guyana to put the Bill before the National Assembly a second time,” he explained.Nandlall noted that the joint Opposition again voted down the Bill when it was presented for the second time.“In my presentation in the National Assembly, I painstakingly explained all which transpired before the CCJ; I emphasised that this is Guyana’s last opportunity to enact the Bill; I warned that a failure to do so would result in drastic financial consequences. All the speakers on our side advanced similar presentations. Like the first time when the Bill was debated, our plea fell on deaf ears. Mr Carl Greenidge led the onslaught for the APNU. He boldly asserted that the CCJ could not dictate for the Guyana Parliament. Mr Khemraj Ramjattan argued along the same vein, “the CCJ does not run this Parliament, we do!” he declared. They, eventually, voted the Bill down,” Nandlall stated. read more
AC Milan coach Vincenzo Montella was welcomed back to the stadium where he played many memorable games as a forward for the Giallorossi, celebrating his goals doing the ‘Aeroplanino’ (Little Airplane).But it was Luciano Spalletti’s hosts who were left celebrating following an entertaining clash, Nainggolan beating Milan’s teenaged ‘keeper Gianluigi Donnarumma in the 62nd minute to make it three wins in succession.Roma remain second, four points off the lead with Milan seven adrift in third, with a one-point lead on both Napoli and Lazio.“It was a difficult game tonight because Milan have quality throughout the squad,” Spalletti told Mediaset.“What they say about this team and their coach is true. They’re up there with the best and they’ll be fighting to the end.“We did well to take the three points.”After just 20 minutes Gianluca Lapadula earned Milan’s chance when he tempted Wojciech Szczesny into a rash tackle.But when Niang stepped up to take it, fans had reason for concern.Roma’s defender Federico Fazio (R) vies with AC Milan’s forward Gianluca Lapadula during the italian Serie A football match Roma vs AC Milan at the Olympic Stadium in Roma on December 12, 2016 © AFP / FILIPPO MONTEFORTELast week the Frenchman was involved in an on-field spat with Lapadula after his fellow forward had won a penalty at Crotone. Niang won the argument, but missed the penalty and it was thanks to Lapadula’s late winner that Milan took the points from a 2-1 win.This time these was no spat, but Niang’s tame shot was well covered by Szczesny, who dived to his left to parry it to safety.Montella later said: “They say Milan get lucky sometimes. Well, not tonight.“But there were a lot of positives tonight, it wouldn’t be fair to focus on just one incident.”Later Szczesny laughed off his heroics: “I was just doing my job. I’d made an error so was trying to remedy it.”After the miss, Roma took the initiative, striker Edin Dzeko firing an angled drive inches past Donnarumma’s post, but Spalletti was left concerned when Bruno Peres was stretchered off in tears to be replaced by former Milan star Stephan El Shaarawy.Milan resumed in far more positive fashion after the break, but Mario Pasalic was off target from Andrea Bertolacci’s delivery.And after Diego Perotti blasted over from a corner for the hosts, Nainggolan cut in from the right to unleash a left-foot drive from outside the area that left Donnarumma clutching at thin air.Roma could have doubled their lead but Donnarumma did well to stop Dzeko’s drive at the near post after the Bosnian robbed Gabriel Paletta, while at the other end Mati Fernandez failed to trouble Szczesny with a shot at the neat post.– Kalinic double –Earlier, Croatia striker Nikola Kalinic struck a stunning first-half brace as Fiorentina held off a spirited fightback from Sassuolo to prevail 2-1 and move up to seventh.Nikola Kalinic of Fiorentina scored a brace against Sassuolo © AFP/File / Michal CizekLa Viola settled quickly at their Artemio Franchi stadium and after Josip Ilicic curled an early free kick inches past the top corner, they had a 10th minute lead.Ilicic was involved again with another free kick, but after it hit the wall to bounce up into the air Kalinic stole the glory with a spectacular volley to beat Andrea Consigli in the Sassuolo net.Remarkably, it was Kalinic’s first goal at home since against Juventus last April, the Croatian scoring all six of his previous goals this term away.Five minutes before the interval, Kalinic produced another sparkler, the striker meeting Federico Chiesa’s low cross with a cheeky back-heel flick from the edge of the box that bounced in off the inside of the upright.Sassuolo reduced arrears three minutes later, Acerbi firing home from a crowded area as the hosts failed to deal with a corner on 75 minutes.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Roma’s midfielder Radja Nianggolan (C) celebrates with teammates after scoring during the Italian Serie A football match Roma vs AC Milan at the Olympic Stadium in Roma on December 12, 2016 © AFP / FILIPPO MONTEFORTEMILAN, Italy, Dec 12 – Roma’s Radja Nainggolan hit a second-half scorcher to secure a 1-0 win over AC Milan, who saw M’Baye Niang miss a first-half penalty, to close to within four points of leaders Juventus on Monday.Roma and Milan had both dropped to seven points behind Juventus after Gonzalo Higuain scored twice on Sunday to seal a precious 2-1 derby win at Torino. read more
160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! THURSDAY Son Mayor Salsa Band, 6 p.m., AMC Walkway between Palm Avenue and San Fernando Road, Burbank. Back to the Future, 8 p.m., Universal CityWalk, Universal City. Free. Call (818) 622-1111.
LATEST “If not, I see the people working in the same way, in the future I’m going to be this guy. I am the most stupid person to work.”With four years left on his contract and chairman Daniel Levy unlikely to welcome any approaches from other clubs, Pochettino would have to quit if he wanted out.Asked directly if he would take a sabbatical, he replied: “I am open like I said before. I am open to everything.“Of course I love to work, I love Tottenham, I love to be here every day, I enjoy it a lot, I am so grateful but after five years, I think our effort was massive.“Of course my motivation is to be here and to work hard, to try to achieve all that the club want to achieve. Ronaldo warned Lukaku how hard scoring goals in Serie A would be before Inter move talkSPORT is your home of live football! Here’s what’s coming up on talkSPORT and talkSPORT 2… deals Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won Man United transfer news live: Haaland ‘wants a change’, two players off in January REVEALED Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card Getty 2 Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ “But the problem is I need to know what we need to achieve or for what we are going to fight and then who is going to assess the tools that we have to achieve what we plan to achieve.“That is the most important because in the five years we have achieved a lot of things and I think like I explained before, it was an amazing period. But now it’s what’s next, that is my point.“And I think of course we are all excited now and it’s difficult to see the future but the future arrives quick.“And if you are not focused and if you don’t start to work and if you do not make a plan, if you don’t anticipate the things, when you crash you crash.” LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury Mauricio Pochettino has worked miracles at Tottenham Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Mauricio Pochettino has warned Tottenham he could quit if he is not backed in the transfer market.Lucas Moura, whose hat-trick against Ajax on Wednesday saw Spurs book their place in next month’s Champions League final, was the last player signed by the club in a £25million move from Paris Saint-Germain in January 2018. Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ Green reveals how he confronted Sarri after Chelsea’s 6-0 defeat at Man City ADVICE Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars Getty Mauricio Pochettino will be in the dugout for Tottenham’s Champions League final against Liverpool on June 1 “But if we expect every season to be in the final of the Champions League because it is our plan, we need to create a plan. And the plan maybe is different to what has happened in the last five years.“And if we believe that if we operate in the same way that we have operated in the last five years we are going to be every season in the final of the Champions League, and we are going to be every season in the top four and competing against projects like Liverpool or Manchester City or Manchester United, I think we are very naive.“If you want to expect the same from Liverpool, from Manchester City or Manchester United and Chelsea, and you put the same expectation on Tottenham, and the people expect the same, of course, give me different tools to work. Pochettino is on course to guide Tottenham to a fourth successive top-four finish and could end the season lifting Europe’s biggest prize.But the Argentine has warned Spurs cannot compete with the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United unless he is given ‘different tools to work’ with.“I am not open to start a new chapter with no plan, with no clear idea, with not being transparent, telling you and telling our fans what’s next, what is our objective,” the Tottenham boss said.“I know very well how this business works. And we know very well that we need to operate in a different way – that doesn’t mean to spend more or less money. LIVE ON talkSPORT Aston Villa vs West Brom (Saturday, 12:30pm) – talkSPORTDerby vs Leeds United (Saturday, 5:15pm) – talkSPORTSunderland vs Portsmouth (Saturday, 7:30pm) – talkSPORT 2Doncaster vs Charlton (Sunday, 12:15pm) – talkSPORT 2Tottenham vs Everton (Sunday, 3pm) – talkSPORT 2Mansfield vs Newport (Sunday, 6pm) – talkSPORT 2 tense 2 REPLY huge blow shining gameday cracker no dice read more
Musicians are known by the music they create – whatever else we know about them is usually the result of media interviews. Unlike Bollywood celebrities or sporting stars, they are only sparingly written about. Which is why the recent spate of biographies on musicians is heartening.Take Romance of the Bamboo,Musicians are known by the music they create – whatever else we know about them is usually the result of media interviews. Unlike Bollywood celebrities or sporting stars, they are only sparingly written about. Which is why the recent spate of biographies on musicians is heartening.Take Romance of the Bamboo Reed by Uma Vasudev (on Hariprasad Chaurasia), Vishwa Mohan Bhatt – The Musical Messiah by Kanchan Mathur, or Journey with a Hundred Strings (on Shiv Kumar Sharma) by Ina Puri.Vishwa Mohan BhattA good marketing tool for musicians or an extended catalogue or even a critical appraisal. Call it what you will, but music biographies are here to stay. And why not? They chronicle the journey of the musician from an ordinary person to the extraordinary cult figure.The insights are many: for instance, how Chaurasia rose from a mere flute player at All India Radio at Cuttack, Orissa, to being a world famous maestro or how, when he was 13, Bhatt acquired a Spanish guitar for Rs 25 and made a series of innovations over years to perfect it into the Mohan veena or even how Sharma worked hard to make the santoor playable at classical concerts.Hariprasad ChaurasiaFor musicians, it is more than a chronicle. They also hope to encapsulate the times they live in. As Bhatt says: “This book encompasses my life so far. My second book in Hindi is underway.”In a nation where it is difficult to document musical trends or biographical details because of a lack of dispassionate sources, such books have not come a moment too soon.Yet critics will carp. “Pandit Ravi Shankar wrote his autobiography at a time when he had achieved a certain stature in the music world. It should not be used to get easy publicity,” says sitar player Shubhendra Rao.advertisementThere is an anti-view, though. “I think there is a dearth of biographies of artistes. They are a great source of inspiration for upcoming musicians,” says thumri singer Rashmi Agarwal. Indeed. read more
Next World Cup 2019: Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma set flurry of records vs AustraliaWorld Cup 2019: Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma became the 1st Indian opening pair to post a century stand against Australia in any World Cup match.advertisement Saurabh Kumar LondonJune 9, 2019UPDATED: June 9, 2019 17:25 IST Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan during India’s opening World Cup encounter against South Africa. (Reuters Photo)HIGHLIGHTSRohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan tormented Australia with a record opening standNo other Indian pair had posted a century opening stand vs Australia in World CupsRohit and Dhawan are now the most successful opening pair vs Australia in ODIsShikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma became the most successful opening pair against Australia in ODIs on Sunday, during the 14th match of World Cup 2019 between India and Australia.Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma went past West Indies pair of Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes. Indian openers took seven fewer innings to cross the tally of 1152 runs set by the West Indies stalwarts.Rohit and Dhawan duo have also recorded the highest opening stand for India against Australia in World Cup history in the same match when they surpassed 76, which was made by the same pair at the Sydney Cricket World Cup during the last edition of World Cup in 2015.Rohit and Dhawan added record 127 runs for the first wicket before Coulter-Nile removed the former at 57. India won the toss and elected to bat first against Australia at The Oval.Rohit – Shikhar pair is now the most successful opening pair against Australia in the ODIs, going past West Indies pair of Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes’ tally of 1152 runs – in seven fewer innings!#INDvAUS #AUSvIND #CWC19Rajneesh Gupta (@rgcricket) June 9, 2019At The Oval on Sunday, Dhawan and Rohit completed their 16th opening century partnership to equal the duo of Adam Gilchrist and Matthew Hayden for second most 100+ opening partnerships in ODIs. The legendary duo of Tendulkar and Ganguly lead the chart with 21 century partnership.Rohit and Dhawan came together as India openers during the 2013 Champions Trophy in England and have not looked back since. Rohit went on score three double hundreds while Dhawan has been the epitome of consistency. They have stitched up many match winning partnerships over the last five years.advertisementIn ODIs, the Dhawan-Rohit pair is the highest run-scoring opening pair in the world since 2013.Rohit and Dhawan are also the second most successful Indian opening pair after Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly. The opening pair trails the highest ranked duo of Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly by a significant margin. Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly had put together 8227 runs between them.Overall, Dhawan and Rohit are the seventh highest scoring pairing in ODI cricket. Tendulkar and Ganguly are top of the pile followed by Mahela Jayawardene-Kumar Sangakkara (5992 runs), Tillakaratne Dilshan-Sangakkara (5475 runs), Marvan Atapattu-Sanath Jayasuriya (5462 runs), Adam Gilchrist-Matthew Hayden (5409 runs) and Gordon Greenidge-Desmond Haynes (5206 runs).Also Read | World Cup 2019: Indian fan flaunts Balidaan Badge at The Oval after ICC says no to MS DhoniAlso Read | World Cup 2019: Rohit Sharma breaks a Sachin Tendulkar record in ODIsAlso Watch:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted bySaurabh Kumar Tags :Follow World Cup 2019Follow Shikhar DhawanFollow India vs Australia read more
Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, says the Special Education Policy, aimed at providing a framework to meet the educational needs of special students, is now before Cabinet for approval.He was speaking at the 2018 Annual Conference of the Association of Principals and Vice Principals of Secondary Schools held at the Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort and Spa on October 14.The policy, drafted by the Ministry’s Special Education Unit, will complement the Disabilities Act, which makes provision to safeguard and enhance the welfare of persons with disabilities across Jamaica.Its two main goals are ensuring equity and access to educational opportunities; and to promote a system of inclusive education where possible.The policy seeks to protect the rights of children and youth with disabilities against discrimination in educational settings, and it promotes awareness of students’ right to quality education. In addition, it will ensure that students are provided with the necessary accommodations they need in the educational setting.Senator Reid noted that over the last academic year, the Ministry increased the support for students with special needs by providing additional caregivers through the Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment (HOPE) Programme.“Over 60 families are benefiting from this programme, which allows students with special needs to remain in their community schools and be educated among their peers while receiving the support needed to function effectively in the school environment,” he explained.“This includes several students in rural Jamaica who are blind and would have otherwise had to board in Kingston to attend the (Salvation Army) School for the Blind,” he noted.The Minister said, further, that a new curriculum for Students with Moderate to Profound Intellectual Disabilities was recently launched in partnership with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).It addresses language and communication, mathematics, science, physical education, music and life skills.“This curriculum seeks to provide students with daily living skills… and a level of social skills that will assist him/her to interact appropriately with family and the wider community,” Senator Reid noted.Meanwhile, new special education centres were opened at Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville and Sam Sharp Teachers’ College in Montego Bay at the start of the new academic year.These, along with the Savanna-la-Mar Inclusive Academy in Westmoreland, and the Lyssons Centre of Excellence in St. Thomas, which were opened in 2017, add to the facilities established across the island that provide support for children with special needs.Senator Reid said the Ministry has undertaken to provide financial and technical support for a new programme at the School for Therapy Education and Parenting of Children with Multiple Disabilities (STEP Centre) in Kingston.“This programme targets students at the early-childhood level who have physical disabilities and are also visually impaired. The programme is intended to equip these students to transition to the primary level,” he noted.He said that the Special Education Unit provides Braille and large-print material for persons who are blind or visually impaired.In addition, students with special needs are able to receive accommodation for national examinations.This may include extended time, readers/writers, examination in alternative format (braille/large print), breaks or prompters,” he added, noting that a psycho-educational assessment report or a medical report must be presented with a request for accommodation on registering for a national exam. Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, says the Special Education Policy, aimed at providing a framework to meet the educational needs of special students, is now before Cabinet for approval. The policy, drafted by the Ministry’s Special Education Unit, will complement the Disabilities Act, which makes provision to safeguard and enhance the welfare of persons with disabilities across Jamaica. Story Highlights He was speaking at the 2018 Annual Conference of the Association of Principals and Vice Principals of Secondary Schools held at the Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort and Spa on October 14. read more
A site has been selected and approved for a new, modern school to replace LeMarchant-St. Thomas Elementary School in Halifax. The school will be built on the existing property, as submitted by the Halifax Regional School Board and approved by Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey. “The current site represents the best option for students, teachers and staff,” said Ms. Casey. “We want to ensure that the students of LeMarchant-St. Thomas have access to a leading edge learning facility as soon as possible.” The Halifax Regional School Board will now establish a school steering team to begin the planning and design process. “We are so pleased that the site has been selected and that students and staff will remain in the location that is best for the community,” said Melinda Daye, chair of the Halifax Regional School Board. “Now the exciting part begins: planning a learning facility that will reflect all students’ needs.” The site approval will also allow the board to start working with the school community to plan for the relocation of the students currently attending LeMarchant-St. Thomas Elementary in September 2016. This will allow students to continue their studies while the new school is under construction. read more