Education sector benefiting from major JSIF programme interventions

Project manager of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund's (JSIF) Basic Needs Trust Fund Dainty Ann Barrett Smith provides an update on the programme's implementation during a recent Jamaica Information Service think tank.
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THE education sector has been the biggest beneficiary of interventions implemented under the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) Programme. Now in its ninth cycle, the programme (BNTF IX) is financed by the Caribbean Development Bank. It covers five target areas education and human resource development, access and drainage, water and sanitation systems, health, and livelihood enhancement. Speaking at a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) Think Tank held at the agency's headquarters in Kingston, JSIF Managing Director Omar Sweeney said the investment in education accounts for the majority of the resources deployed through the BNTF. “Under the portfolio of education, for instance, where more than 50 per cent of the projects have gone, about 58 per cent of the total resources that we received, we've done, more than anything else, classroom spaces,” Sweeney said. He explained that the work involved expanding a number of schools to remove the shift system as well as making sure classrooms have proper ventilation. “You're talking about providing appropriate classroom ratios that is student-to-teacher ratios in terms of the number of students, especially at the early childhood and primary school level, making sure that these ratios are considered best practice,” Sweeney said.