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November 12, 2012
Star News


Ministry and JTA reach agreement on teaching Council Bill

Education Minister, Reverend Ronald Thwaites, says progress has been made in discussions between the ministry and the Jamaica Teachers Association (JTA) on the proposed Jamaica Teaching Council Bill.

The Bill, which the Minister is working to have tabled in the House of Representatives during the current 2012/13 parliamentary year, seeks to provide for the establishment of a governing body for the teaching profession, and institute a regime for the licensing and registration of all government-paid teachers.

It also gives legal powers to the Council to immediately suspend and cancel the registration of a teacher, who is charged for what is deemed a disqualifiable offence, which includes: sexual offences, murder, pornography, robbery, and fraud.

Speaking at the JTA's Roll of Honour Awards Ceremony at the Wyndham Kingston Hotel last Thursday, Thwaites said the ministry and JTA, supported by representatives of the church and Parent/Teacher Associations, have reached a 'substantial agreement' on the terms of the Bill.

He said the legislation will provide for 'the professionalism of the teaching profession'.

"This legislation should not cause any more trepidation than the Legal Profession Act does for the lawyers or the Medical Act (does) for the doctors, or for any other profession.

It would be a serious reproach to teachers if they resist such a move. I am pleased (about) the commitment of your association, in this regard," the minister added.

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