Senior Psychologist with the Student Support Services Unit of the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, Juanita Brathwaite. ??(A. Miller/BGIS)

In addition, to a proposal to Government for an alternative educational programme that will see the opening of an alternative facility on the compound of the old Erdiston Primary School, for students at risk, a paper has also been submitted to address the critical?? issue of understaffing at the Students Support Services Unit.

Juanita Brathwaite, Senior Psychologist with the Unit that falls under the Ministry of Education and Human Resource Development, said today a recommendation for the augmentation of the Student Support Services Unit was now under consideration.

She explained that contained in this document was a request that there should be zonal support through the schools. "Rather than this being centralised at the Ministry where we have only one Senior Psychologist and two social workers, we have proposed that there be different zones with their own cadre of professionals. So, for example, if you’re at a school in the north, Alleyne School, Coleridge and Parry or St. Andrew’s Primary, for instance, you will work with that zone in the north."

Noting that this would be replicated in different zones, she stressed that this cadre of professionals would be made up of persons in different areas of support including counsellors, social workers and special education officers.

"The proposal is that they will work with a select group of primary and secondary schools. So, it is going to be decentralised from the Ministry and you’re going to have the requisite support," Ms. Brathwaite maintained.


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