A call has gone out for teachers to enforce the use of Standard English within the classroom. Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones, made the plea while addressing the Graduation Ceremony of the Erdiston Teachers’ Training College last weekend.
Mr. Jones urged graduates to “insist that the use of Standard English is not shunted aside for an adopted style of language which cannot be understood outside the confines of Barbados.
“Our widened global environment has presented new challenges in the delivery of communication skills. Erdiston Teachers’ Training College must therefore insist that Standard English is the language of facility during classes, on teaching practice and in any professional setting,” he opined.
While acknowledging the appeal of dialect to both students and teachers, Minister Jones stressed that “there is a time and a place for everything. No dilution of our language must be accepted, no matter how great the temptation is in our professional settings. Our teachers must communicate using Standard English with the highest level of automaticity, so that our children are presented with the correct models to emulate,” he stressed.
The Minister, a former teacher, also urged Erdiston’s management to “continue its efforts toward ensuring that all our teachers are technologically literate.
“Not only must our teachers be able to use the many technologies to design charts and produce lesson plans, but they must also exhibit competence in sourcing information from around our global community, to be used for the edification of our children,” he stated.
Mr. Jones added that “the time has come for opportunities in E-learning to be one option for students who choose Erdiston Training College as a means to their professional development.”
“E-learning or a blended approach to the use of technology in providing educational options for our teachers, can allow them to access their courses anywhere at their convenience. This approach can resolve the challenges of physical capacity enrollment, a challenge that is very much a part of our post secondary educational landscape today,” he opined.
Minister Jones also stressed the importance of Erdiston to the human resource development of Barbados. “Barbados has neither silver nor gold with which we can trade. Therefore, we must all seek to ensure that the efforts placed on the educating of our human resources are worthy of global scrutiny. Erdiston Teachers’ Training College has a critical mandate that influences the quality of our teachers, the quality of our schools and indirectly, the quality of the products of our education system. I urge you to take it seriously,” he stressed.