Jamaica News: The Ministry of National Security is engaging 125 children and youth, aged eight to 15, in technology-driven educational programmes, drawn from 21 at-risk communities.
Under the school-based Social Intervention Initiative, which will run during the summer, beneficiaries are being empowered towards learning with the utilisation of music, sport and technology, with the aim of transforming their behaviours and attitudes.
Portfolio Minister, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, told JIS News that in some communities, many youth leaving schools are recruited to join gangs, and “we are introducing innovative programmes to engage the students”.
“Many of them cannot bother with traditional learning, so they have to be reached via music and technology,” the Minister said at the end of a tour of the South St. Andrew Police Division, on July 26.
Based on recommendations from the security forces, the Ministry has placed increased focus on identifying and treating risk factors associated with violence among the youth population, and expanding its violence reduction and prevention efforts in the most volatile and vulnerable communities.
The programme is being implemented in five primary schools, three from the Corporate Area, and two from St. James.
Another programme, which is called ‘Behaviour Modification through Emotional Regulation’, is also being rolled out in four primary schools – two in the Corporate Area, and the other two in St. James, targeting 160 students, 16 school administrators, teachers and guidance counsellors.
Activities are focused on basic music theory and skills building; stimulation of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) awareness via the assembling and disassembling of mechanical cars, robotic hands and spider robots; and other programmes to improve literacy and numeracy.
Source: JIS News
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