Jamaican News

Jamaican officials to shutter 18 public schools with small, declining populations of students

Jamaican  public schools

KINGSTON, Jamaica _ Jamaica will close 18 small public schools across the island by September.

Education Minister Ronald Thwaites told Parliament on Tuesday that the closures are intended to achieve greater levels of efficiencies in the school system.

The targeted schools all have small student bodies, ranging from 16 to 68 pupils, and most have had declining enrollments over the last five years.

Thwaites says the schools targeted for closure also perform below the national average on standardized tests. And they cost far more to operate per student than much bigger institutions.

Youngsters will be transferred to schools in nearby communities. Teachers will get placed at other schools or be asked to opt for early retirement.

The government says projected savings from the closures is roughly $200,000 in operational costs.


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