The Progress Party’s plan for education

The Progress Party is proud of the education system that we have developed in Jersey over many decades, one that has produced many of our leaders in all aspects of island life be it political, business, the public sector, sporting, cultural or in the third sector.

Education, both in its delivery and content, has had to always adapt to the demands of a changing economy and society, and to do this we have been fortunate to have had exceptional leaders within our education system. Throughout the decades, teachers that have been dedicated to giving their students the best chance of success.

However, The Progress Party believes Jersey is at a pivotal point in parts of it’s economy due to several factors, including Brexit. It is becoming apparent that the island’s skills base will need to diversify and become less reliance on imported labour in all sectors of our economy.

To affect change we are going to need innovative leadership throughout the education system. This will be from early years education through primary and secondary schools and into further education where the latter, as an example, must offer more opportunity for on island degree courses to fill future skills gaps.

The Progress Party believe the island must focus harder on delivering inclusivity and equality in all our schools to ensure every child is afforded the best possible start in life. We must help all our students to discover, and make best use of, their talents.

The Progress Party’s aim is to help all students realise their full potential and grow a passion for lifelong learning. We must prepare our students for future employment by preparing them for increased globalisation, changing local demographics and technological changes. These changes will all be part of driving our economy forward.

Students need core values and competencies to be able to thrive in a changing world and our schools, teachers and parents will need to work more collaboratively to help students develop the necessary new skills.

Our developing Education policy

The Progress Party uphold the core values such as respect, responsibility, integrity, resilience, care and harmony. Students will need to develop an ability in all these values to be more self aware, to make responsible decisions and to manage their lives effectively. They must learn to be critical and innovative thinkers, improve their awareness of an ever changing world and learn to communicate and collaborate effectively and confidently.

All children deserve to be encouraged to learn and develop from the earliest age, and we will put renewed impetus into the 1001 days initiative that provides a good base. We will maintain support for free nursery education this giving all children the best opportunity early in life.

As children move through the education system in Jersey, The Progress Party consider all students should reach key stage outcomes as they develop both academically and socially .

Developing healthy habits, believing in their own abilities, being able to communicate effectively and being socially responsible are examples of some of the key outcomes that we should expect from our young Islanders. Delivery on these outcomes will undoubtably improve children’s ability to to successfully navigate the island’s curriculum. We believe it’s important that the curriculum meets the needs of our changing island as well as fulfilling the aspirations of our young people as they develop into adults.

The Progress Party believes that every child wants to, and can, learn if we can provide safe and caring learning environments where children develop thinking skills, build their knowledge actively and where assessment is used to address children’s learning gaps.

We want all our schools to be inspirational, where children are cared for and motivated to learn and grow and where all students are provided with a positive experience.

The Progress Party want schools to work even more closely with parents and their local community to bring the best out of all students. We want to provide good opportunities for all students, irrespective of background or family circumstances.

The Progress Party acknowledges that many teachers go the extra mile for their students. Teachers are mentors and role models to their students and The Progress Party will ensure that teachers are better valued in society. We will make sure they are rewarded for improving the quality of teaching and developing new ways for students to learn.

We will commit to supporting our teachers build on their current skills base so that they can adapt to changing needs in the curriculum and better guide students as they grow .

The Jersey curriculum must continue to evolve so as to cater for the needs of an ever changing island, one that needs to control migration whilst moving towards a more diverse economy.

The Progress Party understands the need for primary education to continue to offer the core subjects, but is aware that the curriculum should consider new technologies and changing trends. Secondary, and especially further education, need to better understand and cater for the future needs of the local economy. Within that curriculum there will undoubtedly be a need to provide more opportunities in vocational skills.

The Progress Party is acutely aware of the stresses and strains on students as they work through their education, and that this pressure has been increased through restrictions imposed throughout the pandemic. We will strive to ensure that counselling and student welfare are consistent throughout schools, especially within the secondary school and higher education sectors and that the necessary support and referral processes are in place to support those students who are struggling.

The Progress Party believe that early intervention is key, and that young people need to understand that help is available through peer support and confidential counselling.