CITY & Guilds of London Institute has signed off on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the HEART Trust/NTA aimed at providing students of the HEART Academies with globally recognised certifications in maths and English. The agreement took place at HEART's head office in New Kingston recently, and was signed by Director of City & Guilds International, Jeremy Dahdi, and Managing Director of HEART, Dr Janet Dyer.
“Our labour market surveys continue to show that there is an expanding need for high-level skills in several key sectors of the economic spectrum,” said Dr Dyer. “We have to meet those needs.”
Through the MOU, students of HEART Trust/NTA now have the opportunity to sit the fundamental examinations in addition to the technical and vocational exams currently offered by the institution. City & Guilds maths and English certifications are being offered at the Career Advancement Programme (CAP) level, an alternative to the Caribbean Secondary Examination Council (CSEC).
“Critically, this MOU will also aid in the development of an apprenticeship strategy that meets industry needs, which is one of the central planks of the Merged Entity that is the HEART Trust/NTA, the Jamaican Foundation for Lifelong Learning, the National Youth Service and the Apprenticeship Board,” Dyer said in lauding the educational thrust during the signing ceremony. “The new HEART Trust is on a mission to create an exciting new pool of apprentices in a wide range of skill areas so they can take full advantage of the growing need for technical skills and workplace competencies in the economy.”
The MOU signing was also attended by C&G's representative for Jamaica and the Caribbean, Marva Duncanson; Technical Director at the HEART Trust/NTA, Dr Marcia Rowe Ormonde; Fellow of the City & Guilds of London Institute and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies – Caribbean Maritime University, Professor Gossett Oliver; among other senior directors of HEART Trust/NTA and the City & Guilds.
Jamaica's relationship with the City & Guilds London began in 2009 when the Ministry of Education partnered with the institution to launch the CAP. A year later, Jamaica participated in another City & Guilds contract for the delivery of exams in mathematics and English in all CAP centres worldwide. City & Guilds took its educational initiative a step further in July 2014 by collaborating with the Caribbean Maritime University on the introduction of culturally relevant mathematics and English curricula for Jamaican students. The cultural programme allows students not only to improve their understanding of English and mathematics, but to develop presentation skills on the subject areas.
In continuing the long-standing relationship between the two parties, Minister of Education Ruel Reid along with Dahdi, are now contemplating the extension of the existing contract for maths and English skills and greater collaboration on the delivery of City & Guilds qualifications including engineering.
Approximately 20,000 candidates registered for the maths and English exams in June 2018. The ministry expects that the number of candidates registering for the June 2019 exams will significantly improve with the MOU between City & Guilds and HEART. City & Guilds has provided 77,000 certificates to Jamaican students since 2010.