Education Ministry explores incorporating culture into schools

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

The public view of the late cultural icon and calypsonian Leroy Calliste, Black Stalin at the Chapel of JE Guide Funeral Home and Crematorium, Coffee Street San Fernando on Wednesday. – ROGER JACOB

THE seed planted by Justice of Appeal Gillian Lucky for compositions from the body of work Black Stalin produced over five decades to become part of the school’s curriculum has fallen on fertile soil.

Education Minister Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly in welcoming the call, told the Newsday, the ministry is currently exploring how culture can be formally incorporated into teaching and learning

At the funeral service of Leroy Calliste (Black Stalin) on January 5, Lucky suggested that in order to pay homage to this calypso giant his compositions should be made part of the school curriculum.

“We need the generations to understand what our heritage is and that is why I again say that we have many great people amongst us, alive and dead.

“Black Stalin is one of them and the way we give them a true legacy, where generations to come will remember the name Black Stalin and generations will aspire to achieve the laudable goals that Black Stalin so expressly detailed in his calypsoes.”

Stalin, 81, who died on December 28 after an eight-year battle with a stroke, recorded some 145 calypsos during his life time. His prolific writing, according to San Fernando East MP Brian Manning, held Caribbean leaders to account.

Former president Anthony Carmona also reflected on his political onslaught of politicians, but noted the genius of this phenomenal lyricist never offended, as he worked his magic in sound, rhythm and linguistic content.

Asked for her response to Lucky’s suggestion, Gadsby-Dolly said the ministry was finalising a patriotism policy.

This policy, she said, would offer further guidance to principals and teachers on the inclusion of local content in the teaching of the curriculum, to develop nationalism in young citizens.

“There are adequate opportunities for many aspects of TT’s culture to be incorporated into teaching and learning, and many teachers do this informally.

“However, the time has come for a policy to explicitly state that it must be done, and training should be provided, along with monitoring, to ensure that implementation results in the intended outcome.”

This policy is expected to be completed and implemented within the current academic year, she said.