Plan Hopes to Improve Math Scores in Two Years…But Then What?

Rev. Ronald Thwaites, Minister of Education Source: The Jamaica Observer

Rev. Ronald Thwaites, Minister of Education.
Source: The Jamaica Observer.

Article (re)defined by SM.


The article in The Jamaica Observer highlights the recent pilot project developed by the Ministry of Education to improve numeracy rates by providing parents with mathematics training. This project, funded by the Inter American Development Bank (IDB) and the Embassy of Japan will work with low-income parents in two rural communities over two years. The author outlines that the project is motivated by the Ministry’s goal to achieve at least 85% mastery on the Grade Four Numeracy Test by 2018.


The Grade Four Numeracy Test is a national exam that determines mathematical proficiency levels among Jamaican students. This exam has received significant attention in the past 5 years as more than 50% of students at the grade four level were failing and as such were considered not numerate. Several factors have been highlighted as contributing to these low levels. Some of these factors include: teacher quality, ineffective methodologies being used in math sessions, lack of parental involvement among many others. This article focuses on the role of parents in addressing the numeracy levels among Jamaican young people.
The article uses quotes from and an image of the Minister to convey the importance of this project. Although the Minister announced the project, his picture is somewhat unnecessary. Perhaps, a picture of a group of parents working with their children on an assignment would be more appropriate, since the article is based on targeting parents. Continue reading