According to the Permanent Secretary of Education, Mrs. Ionie Liburd-Willett, her department recognizes that schools are changing as a result of transformation in the educational and technological landscape.
“Schools cannot continue to be schools as usual,” Mrs. Willett emphasized. “We must change to meet the needs of schools in the 21st Century. Schools today require different forms of leadership. This is why the training workshop was timely and necessary.”
She further noted that there is an increase in the demand for skilled workers in the labor market and parents who are enlightened and asking hard questions of education officials.
Mrs. Willett stressed that Principals, Deputy Principals, and Education Officers have to serve as leaders for student learning. “When anyone walks into a school they must feel the energy; they must feel the leadership,” Mrs. Willett stated.
“Principals, Deputy Principals, and Education Officers, you have to first of all serve as leaders for student learning. You must know academic content be current with pedagogical techniques and strategies. You must work with teachers to strengthen skills. You have to collect, analyze and use data in ways that will promote excellence. Good effective school principals and other education officials are the foundation of good effective schools.”
That is why, said the official, it was important for the principals of the schools to undergo a course which is designed to educate them on effective institutional Leadership.
Topics discussed at the workshop that was held last week included, “Principals as Institutional & Instructional Leaders” which was presented by the Chief Education Officer, Dr. Patrick Welcome.
Mr. Michael Blake, Education Officer and Ms. Kaye Bass, Senior Officer in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs made presentations on the “Principal as Directional Leaders” and “Protocol and Procedures in Educational Settings” respectively.