The Central Jamaica Conference of Seventh-day Adventist (CJC) held its first Early Childhood Development (ECD) Seminar on Sunday October 13, 2019 at the Willowdene Group of Schools Auditorium, St. Catherine.
According to Dr. Clifton Knight, Education Director, “the seminar was to formulate ideas in fulfilling the requirements to certify the Early Childhood institutions in CJC and also an opportunity to create a sense of community and comradery among the ECD institutions as we strive for the growth and development of all our institutions within 3 years.”
He took the time to outline that, “there are over thirty ECD Institutions within CJC that are not yet certified and the reality that over 600 years of early childhood education experience is inherent in these institutions it is the desire of the department and conference to address this,” he said.
A total of thirty-one Educators - Principals and Teachers from ECD Institutions within CJC were in attendance.
Those attending benefited from an interactive and engaging experience as they were actively involved in group activities chaired by Dr. Angel Brown, Adult Educator and Consultant.
“The purpose of the exercise was to gauge group cohesion and self-efficacy towards certification of the Early Childhood Commission (ECC) standards,” said Dr.Brown.
“The group of participants were provided the same set of steps to follow and encouraged to document how each centre would become certified. They were divided into four (4) committees charged with the same instructions. The results showing the need to bring Adventist Principles in harmony with the standards of the ECC, working towards a safer more conducive learning environment for the future.” Dr. Brown concluded.
The participants shared that they enjoyed the seminar and it was meaningful and productive.
“The general atmosphere was one of enablement and mobilization and it was exciting to be engaged and empowered,” said Jacqueline Bennett, Co-ordinator Early Childhood Division at the Willowdene Group of Schools.
The seminar will be an annual event, however the institutions continue to meet regularly as they work as a professional community implementing and adjusting strategies towards achieving certification of all schools.