Jamaican News

Jamaica Day To Celebrate Icons In Arts, Agriculture And Technology

Schools across the island will celebrate the country’s outstanding achievers in the arts, agriculture and technology on Jamaica Day 2020.

The day will be observed on Friday (February 21) under the theme: ‘Celebrating Jamaica…highlighting our Icons in the Arts, Agriculture and Technological Innovations.’

Senior Education Officer and Chairman of the Jamaica Day Planning Committee, Marlon Williams, told JIS News that schools are being asked to select an icon or icons to be the focus of the day.

“They may focus on all three areas of the theme, or maybe two or one; the decision is theirs to make,” he said.

“What is important is that they showcase the life and work of the person (s). They may select someone, who has passed or is living, at the community level or the national level,” he pointed out.

Schools are urged to include all students, staff and the wider community in planning the day’s activities, and also engage the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), Social Development Commission (SDC), parish libraries, churches, corporate Jamaica, civic committees and community-based groups.

The Denbigh High School in Clarendon will get national attention as the featured school for the day.

Mr. Williams told JIS News that activities at the school will commence with a civic ceremony and there will an exciting programme throughout the day.

He noted that Denbigh High has a tradition of showcasing Jamaica’s culture and heritage “so we can expect rich displays focusing on all three areas of the theme.”

The highlight of this year’s Jamaica Day celebrations is a creative arts competition, being undertaken through partnership with Fontana Pharmacy.

Schools are invited to create a two to three-minute video showcasing the life and work of the icon or icons they choose.

The videos will be uploaded to Fontana Pharmacy’s social media platforms, and schools and the wider public will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite. A panel of judges will determine the winner and second and third places.

The competition, which will be judged in primary and secondary categories, will see schools vying for trophies, laptops, projectors and cash prizes.

Another component of Jamaica Day 2020 is the best decorated building competition, where entities are encouraged to adorn their buildings using black, green, gold and bandana.

“A team will go out on February 17 and 18 to visit and take pictures to select the winner,” Mr. Williams said.

Jamaica Day, which is part of the Culture in Education Programme, was instituted to encourage an appreciation for the nation’s cultural heritage, especially among students, and celebrate the country’s contribution to the world.

Mr. Williams noted that Jamaica Day is usually observed on the last Friday of February, however, since schools will be on mid-term holidays at that time, the decision was taken this year to celebrate the day on the third Friday of the month. “We want full participation from schools and especially younger students. We want them to be appreciative of what we are doing as a country in terms of recognising and preserving our rich culture,” he said. For further information on Jamaica Day 2020, persons may call the Chair of the planning committee at 876- 387-4973 or 876-487-0050.


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