Teachers Encouraged To Embrace Artificial Intelligence

Jamaica’s Minister of Education and Youth, Hon. Fayval Williams, has called on teachers to embrace the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the teaching and learning process in the classroom.

She noted that although there is the notion that AI software is poised to automate a number of jobs globally, it is unlikely that the technology will replace teachers.

“Artificial Intelligence isn’t likely to replace humans any time soon… and I believe so in the classroom as well. There will be a lot of help from technology. But I believe at the core of it, we still need teachers in our classrooms,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Dean of Teachers’ Colleges of Jamaica, Dr. Garth Anderson, stated that instructional teaching strategies must be restructured and aligned to the current technological evolution in progress.

Dr. Anderson, also the Principal of Church Teachers’ College in Manchester, noted that the rapid increase in the use of AI requires educators and students to be prepared to engage in the changing dynamics of the education landscape.

“If the education sector hopes to utilize AI’s full potential, the focus must be to expose the present cadre of teachers and, indeed, the next generation of teachers to the transformative nature of technology in our classrooms,” he said.

Dr. Anderson also urged educators to embrace AI, despite public furor that the technology has the potential to replace teachers.

“I believe it does not look like teachers are at risk of being replaced by robots at any time soon. While AI programs can teach students literacy or Mathematics or any subject, the more complex impartation of social and emotional skills will remain in the domain of human beings,” he added.

Dr. Anderson stated, however, that the impact of the ChatGPT AI software on the integrity of quality-assurance systems in colleges as well as the education system at large, cannot be ignored.

The conference was held under the theme ‘Preparing Teachers for the Next Education Task Force: Implications for National Development.’

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Edited by Jesus Chan

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