The Parkinson Memorial Secondary School is set to introduce its new curriculum next week.
Principal Jeff Broomes told Barbados TODAY this evening that he had in fact spent his vacation working on fine tuning the new curriculum and today printing up timetables.
His comments were in direct relation to claims that some teachers had not seen a timetable or were still unsure of what the curriculum would comprise.
“I am printing out timetables. I had no vacation. I spent the entire vacation working on the curriculum, getting things in place. So there are no problems I am aware of. Unless they are cutting back on the CVQs and that is what it is, but everything is on stream,” he said when contacted.
In May, the principal had called a special meeting with parents to outline his plans for the new path the school would take given that so many students were recording below pass marks there, but still expected to sit the same exams as their counterparts across the island.
He had said that the time had come for a “full-fledged remedial programme” to be introduced for first and second formers, with diagnostic testing done for identified students to determine their aptitude.
Additionally, he outlined plans for changes in the curriculum throughout the school to expose students to the arts, computer technology, manufacturing, hotel industry related subjects, with heavy elements of skills-based teaching, something it is hoped will be spurred by the new industrial arts block.
Core subjects like Maths, English, Social Studies, Integrated Science and Spanish which are required by the Ministry of Education, he had explained, would all be done in first and second forms.
He had also outlined plans for more emphasis on the arts, as well as a number of virtual programmes that would see the introduction of a beautification institute, a virtual manufacturing plant, virtual hotel and a virtual recording studio, all of which would focus on practical skills-based applications.
Broomes said today though that plans for his remedial classes were already in place with the teachers assigned, and beyond that all his other outlined plans for the recording studio and other areas were on stream.
“Why would they say that?” he asked when told that there were reports that teachers were indicating they had not seen a timetable. “If there are any problems I am not aware of it. In terms of curriculum, I know they [ministry] are to replace a few staff members that I have specifically asked for and that has not happened as yet, but the timetable and curriculum are finalised and ready to go.”
“We are definitely on stream. We have the outline of the recording studio and I have given [the music teacher] the curriculum today so he can decide how best to work it. There is nothing in the new curriculum that is not going forward.
“The remedial classes are in place. I have two teacher to teach the core subjects. If there are any issues it would have to be at the ministry and they have not informed me.”
During a tour of the school’s new industrial block on Monday, Minister of Education Ronald Jones had indicated that he still did not have a problem with the curriculum but stressed that it was important that it correspond with the national curriculum. (LB)