|Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones, addressing the audience at the start of??courses. (C. Pitt/BGIS)??|
There is a heavy demand for teaching jobs.
Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones, revealed this today as he addressed teachers in training at the Erdiston Teachers’ Training College.
Referring to a recent media report on retirements in the teaching service, Mr. Jones noted that upon its release, many persons had rushed down to the Ministry believing that there were jobs available.
While he explained that information within the Ministry showed that between the years 2008 and 2020 a large number of teachers would be leaving the education system, the Minister said that beginning January 1 and towards September 1, this year, 81 teachers and principals, in total, would have retired.
He also noted that statistics for the last four years showed that 345 persons had retired from the education system and he further explained that last year, based on the heavy demand of persons applying, the Human Resource Division in his Ministry had been asked to provide statistics on persons applying to teach since 2000 and up to 2010.
"We get on average 500 persons per year who apply to be teachers," revealed Mr. Jones, adding that in some cases persons would have applied three or four times.
"The bottom line is that this is a profession for which there is a heavy demand for persons to come and work with people.?? I compliment all those who apply. It shows that your heart is in the right place and you want to contribute to the development of the nation through teaching. Unfortunately, many are called but only few are chosen," he said.
The Minister added:??"When you look at the qualifications profile, by and large, they are brilliant with people coming in with Advanced Level or CAPE, excellent grades in the areas that you want; Associate Degrees; First Degrees, Masters in all kinds of areas."
It was noted that for 137 positions for senior teachers in primary schools this year, the Ministry had seen nearly 400 applications, and for the 37 posts for principals there were 173 applications.
Proffering a solution to the situations, the Education Minister urged that persons look beyond Barbados…He said, "We would always have a supply of teachers, but what I would say to Barbadian youngsters [is] don’t see Barbados as your only space. A lot of people in Barbados want to teach, but you don’t have to stay here to teach… There is room to expand beyond our shores," he suggested.