Jamaica To Participate In UN Worlds Largest Lesson

The WLL is part of the UN’s ‘Project Everyone’ campaign to promote the ‘Global Goals for Sustainable Development’. Speaking with JIS News, Education Specialist with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Dr. Rebecca Tortello, said that since 2015, Jamaica has joined the world in participating in the WLL. Jamaica will be among several countries that will participate in the United Nations (UN) World’s Largest Lesson (WLL) 2019 between September and November. Story Highlights Jamaica will be among several countries that will participate in the United Nations (UN) World’s Largest Lesson (WLL) 2019 between September and November.The WLL is part of the UN’s ‘Project Everyone’ campaign to promote the ‘Global Goals for Sustainable Development’.Speaking with JIS News, Education Specialist with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Dr. Rebecca Tortello, said that since 2015, Jamaica has joined the world in participating in the WLL.She noted that the WLL is a repository of lesson plans and activity ideas for all ages that are online and is linked to a broader campaign by ‘Project Everyone’ to promote the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).This year’s initiative will require students to envisage a future world where all child rights are realised and a sustainable future is secured.Therefore, this year, special focus will be placed on Child Rights, as the UN celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the most widely ratified human rights treaty.A bulletin issued to schools by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information states that through the lessons and activities, students will understand the relationship between the SDGs and children’s rights and they will be encouraged to identify actions that they can take to make both of these a reality in their own lives and communities.The bulletin further notes that the Ministry is ensuring that children and young people are being educated about the Global Goals as soon as possible, and, as such, local schools and teachers are encouraged to deliver the introduction to WLL.They should choose from the array of lesson plans found at www.globalgoals.org/worldslargestlesson during September to November at the same time as hundreds of other schools across the world.The material, which is created by and for teachers to use across the world, can be incorporated also during assembly or into existing curricula, namely, Civics/Social Studies/Geography, Health and Family Life Education, Science or History.Dr. Tortello said members of the public are encouraged to volunteer to teach a lesson at a school, similar to what they would do on Read Across Jamaica Day.She is also asking schools that participate in WLL to tag #jamaicagoals and @theworldslesson and post reflections on their experiences.The 17 SDGs are No Poverty, Zero Hunger, Good Health and Well-being, Quality Education, Gender Equality, Clean Water and Sanitation, Affordable and Clean Energy, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, Reduced Inequality, Sustainable Cities and Communities, Responsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action, Life Below Water, Life on Land, Peace and Justice Strong Institutions and Partnerships to achieve the Goals.The SDGs were designed by the UN to provide opportunities for everyone, regardless of background, to tackle issues like climate change and keep the planet fair, healthy and sustainable. read more

Jamaica Has Enhanced Its Standing With International Lending Agencies

“The results…speak for themselves… . The results have been remarkable to all who have paid attention. Not only have we been able to reduce debt by half the gross domestic product (GDP) but we have had inflation being moderate over the last four or five years at three per cent to four per cent,” Dr. Clarke said. Story Highlights He noted that this is further amplified by the country having successfully completed two back-to-back reform programmes with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, says Jamaica’s ability to be fiscally responsible has greatly enhanced its standing with international lending agencies. Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, says Jamaica’s ability to be fiscally responsible has greatly enhanced its standing with international lending agencies.He noted that this is further amplified by the country having successfully completed two back-to-back reform programmes with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).“The results…speak for themselves… . The results have been remarkable to all who have paid attention. Not only have we been able to reduce debt by half the gross domestic product (GDP) but we have had inflation being moderate over the last four or five years at three per cent to four per cent,” Dr. Clarke said.“We have had a return to external sustainability, especially with the reserves in our central bank. We have had consistent and elevated levels of foreign direct investment, while unemployment is at the lowest level in our history,” he added.The Minister was speaking at the LAC Debt Group XV Annual Meeting at the Secrets Resort in Montego Bay on October 3.Speaking within the context of an unemployment rate in March 2013 of 16 per cent to an unemployment rate of 7.8 per cent as at April 2019, Dr. Clarke pointed out that “it tells a tale of a country which has been having a complete reversal of fortunes for the better”.“Never before in the entire history of Jamaica has unemployment been so low. More people are employed today than in the country’s entire history. We have seen fiscal space being created by the downward trajectory of debt that has allowed for a rapid increase in capital expenditure –an increase by 250 per cent over the past four years,” the Finance and the Public Service Minister stated.Dr. Clarke also informed that the country has experienced its longest quarterly stretch of economic growth.“Twenty-five years ago, we were only measuring growth on an annual basis. We are now in our 18th consecutive quarter of economic growth, and even though the levels are not where we would want them to be, they have, however, doubled our 40-year historical average,” he stated.Meanwhile, Dr. Clarke said while Jamaica is not yet out of the woods, he is confident that the systems are in place where “we can build on what we have”.He also mentioned the proposed Fiscal Council, which will be the final arbiter of Jamaica’s Fiscal Rules that stipulate, among other things, a debt-reduction target of 60 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) by financial year 2025/26. read more