Jamaica News: The Mico University College, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, is hosting the inaugural Mico International Mathematics Teaching Summit from March 25 to 27.
It is a knowledge-sharing forum that seeks to explore, analyse and consolidate international best practices in the teaching of mathematics. It features several plenary sessions and workshops, led by local and international experts in various fields of education.
The opening ceremony was held on March 25 at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston. The summit is being held under the theme ‘Mathematics for Economic Growth and Sustainable Development’.
In her address, Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Dr. Grace McLean, said the Government remains committed to improving the performance in mathematics by students who sit various national assessments.
“Specialists and coaches have been employed to assist in the professional development of practising teachers and in their implementation of the mathematics curriculum,” she noted.
Dr. McLean said the summit’s theme articulates the alignment of the subject to Jamaica’s social and economic development.
“The mastery of mathematics is important to national, regional and international socio-economic progress,” she emphasised.
Meanwhile, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Economic Growth Council, Senator Aubyn Hill, congratulated The Mico University College for hosting the summit.
“As we look at this conference, it is vital that we get people involved who really understand what it means to teach mathematics. Growth is vital to move us to prosperity, and if that is going to happen, we must have bright people, and in the middle of it is mathematics,” he said.
In his remarks, Pro Chancellor and Board Chairman, The Mico University College, Professor Neville Ying, said the summit is of national and industry importance to Jamaica.
“We must have effective teaching of mathematics, where students will be able to transfer these skills in mathematics to cater to a variety of needs of people. About 80 per cent of top jobs of the future will require these competencies that mathematics will deliver,” he argued.
The two-day summit will seek to highlight the importance of aligning the performance of students in mathematics with international benchmarks and facilitate participants with the opportunity to increase their knowledge of international best practices in the methodologies of teaching mathematics that promote critical thinking, problem solving and innovation.
Significantly, it will focus on effective solution strategies to overcome key obstacles, including psychological block, deficiencies in teacher quality and deficiencies in teaching methodologies.
Post summit actions include consolidating operation of the Mico International Knowledge Network for Innovations in Mathematics Teaching, and facilitation of the training of teachers to prepare students for their first sitting of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) examinations in 2021.
Another post summit activity is the in-service training of teachers in international best practices in the teaching of mathematics through the new Mico University College Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Learning, Research and Innovation Centre.
Research and publications in the teaching of mathematics using best practices will also be conducted as a post summit activity.
Recommendations will be made to the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information for the development of a national policy and enabling support resources, aimed at achieving world-class performance by teachers and students in mathematics.
The summit is one of several activities in observance of National Mathematics Week (March 22 to 29).
Other partners in the event are the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the University of Plymouth, United Kingdom.
Source: JIS News