THRASS Programme Needs Stakeholder Buy-In

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All stakeholders in education must buy-in to the Teaching Handwriting Reading and Spelling Skills (THRASS) programme if it is to succeed.

This was the message sent at the recent launch of the pilot programme, at the St. Giles Primary School on Ivy Main Road.

Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, Senator Harry Husbands said: ???As much as I talk and as good as the programme is, we would only achieve success in this programme if there is buy-in on the part of the teachers and probably, most importantly, on the part of the parents who also have a role to play in this activity.???

Teachers were told that for this to happen, they must adhere to three basic principles, the first being class control.?????Whether you call it classroom management or class control, whatever methods you are using in the classroom, whether it is this method, whether you are integrating technology as a professional, you have to be in control of the class???,??? he added.

According to Senator Husbands, the second principle related to planning, and he told teachers that despite their method, their lesson plan as well as instructional plans needed to be in order.??The last principle he noted was the questioning technique of teachers. ???Never ask a question that you do not know the answer to,??? he advised, while stressing that where students are asked for an opinion, while their opinion might differ, the teacher still needed to know the answer.

A former teacher, himself, Mr. Husbands pointed out that when teachers are asking students questions in the classroom, they must ensure that it is in ???clear, precise English and Standard English???. And, he urged them to only accept Standard English forms of response from students. ???That allows them to speak properly and therefore it would eventually be reflected in their writing.???

Teachers were reminded that when these principles are followed they are well on the way to having a functioning classroom.??The THRASS programme teaches all 44 speech sounds of the English language.

joy-ann.gill@barbados.gov.bb

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