A group of 18 Cuban teachers has arrived in Jamaica as part of the educational exchange program between the two Caribbean nations.
The educators joined 39 others in Jamaica to launch a Spanish immersion project set to take off with 20 teachers assigned to primary levels, another 17 to secondary grades, and two more to teacher-training institutions.
Deputy Chief Education Officer Dorrett Campbell stated that the Cuban instructors will hold classes at all school levels with an additional five looking after students in primary schools with infant departments.
At a two-day orientation exercise Tuesday in New Kingston, St. Andrew, Dr. Grace McLean, chief education officer in the Ministry of Education, Youth Information, described the program as a “wonderful opportunity” for Jamaican students.
She continued to say that Jamaica is grateful for Cuba's efforts and that the project “will not only provide us with the expertise that you are bringing from your country, but it will also assist you in learning about the Jamaican culture.”
Top educators in the island's schools are already welcoming the Cuban professionals, accommodating their needs and anticipating teachers’ concerns as they transition to their new environment.
Dr. Elaine Cunningham, the principal at St. Hugh’s High School, said of her institution, “We are going to have a wonderful time with our Spanish teacher.
Permanent Ministry Secretary Dean-Roy Bernard stated that the influence from the Cuban transplants is crucial to the education system and that Jamaica is looking forward to improvements to its Spanish departments.