Through its School Positive Behaviour Management Programme (SPBMP), the Ministry of Education is hoping to encourage more parental involvement and participation
in the activities of the island’s22 secondary school.
And to this end, parents and guardians of students attending the Daryll Jordan Secondary in St Lucy packed the conference room at the Ministry of Education on Constitution Road yesterday afternoon to participate in the first meeting of its kind for the school.
Senior Education Officer Patricia Warner made this disclosure to Barbados TODAY.
Outlining details of the programme which seeks to build the self-esteem of the students and encourage parental participation, Warner said: “Since 2007, the Ministry of Education embarked on the School Positive Behaviour Management Programme as we in the ministry try to implement it across the secondary school system. One of the principles of the SPBMP is parent involvement and participation; so this evening the Daryll Jordan Secondary School has started the process.
“We felt it was more convenient, and it has proven to be so, for parents to have come to a central location to share their concerns; what are the existing problems and then strategise towards how to get parents more involved. That is what you want to have: more parental involvement; better student participation; more teacher and parent collaboration; a reduction in some of the negative behaviours and the promotion of what is positive,” Warner added.
Asked if the difficulty of attending meetings at the school was a clear indication some level of zoning should be introduced, Warner said: “Some of the parents attending the meeting are driving cars with St Andrew number plates and some with St Lucy number plates. Suppose some parents are coming from work and they work in The City, this would be the first opportunity, if you are working in The City, to attend a meeting at 4:30 p.m. instead of travelling to St Lucy.
“Meetings for the Daryll Jordan Secondary School would not be held at the ministry all of the time, but it is the beginning of what the ministry is hoping to do in helping parental involvement.”
The senior education officer told Barbados TODAY that at present there were ten secondary schools in involved in the programme and they were further along the way in developing the programme.
She identified The Lodge in St John as one school that had gone beyond parental involvement and had involved the entire school.
“The school looks at its aims and objectives. They have posted all of what they want to achieve and the entire school body is involved. The PTA and the old scholars are involved,” Warner pointed out.
She identified Springer Memorial Secondary as one of the schools fully on board with the programme, pointing out that it had what was called a “parent university”.
Warner said the school’s administration had moved the process where it was actually in the process of engaging in many learning experiences.
Asked if the current social unrest among the island’s young people had led to the establishment of the programme, Warner said: “Behaviour of students is just one of the components of the programme. Really, a lot of the programme is about academic achievement and the development of social skills.
“The whole idea is that persons should feel safe within the school environment. Students and teaching staff should enjoy being at school. Those are some of the things
that we are thinking about.”