'Invest more in education'

Published: Monday | August 6, 2012 Comments 0

John Myers, Gleaner Writer

Prominent banker and businessman Aubyn Hill is one of the fortunate Jamaicans to have realised his childhood dream - that of attending a prestigious high school and enrolling in one of the most sought after universities abroad.

"Jamaica gave me a really good education at the primary level and at the high-school level to form a base that helped me to excel when I travelled overseas to study at the higher level up to Harvard Business School," he shared in an interview with The Gleaner.

"So I am very pleased that part of my dream has come true," he said.

But Hill expressed disappointment that the dream he realised, which would have formed part of the dream of many other Jamaicans, did not come true for them.

"I am disappointed that only a few people like me have had their dreams come true. I think a lot more could have had their dreams come true if we had had better economic management and I must stress that we run our business and our education and our lives by higher standards. We have allowed our standards to become far too low in Jamaica," he lamented.

The Harvard graduate said further that "the economic promise that Jamaica had in the 1960s has really faltered all along the way, for the most part, since we have been independent and that is part of my regret, because it has held so many people back that our economic dream has not happened."

He said, however, that all is not lost "if we raise the standards of education, raise the standard of civil behaviour and we raise the standard that we expect people to live towards ... especially as we get our economy in place with a combination of private sector-led, but Government-facilitated economic growth."

"I think we have to invest more in education ... I think our standards have fallen far too low to compete with the best that is now coming out of India, China, Singapore and elsewhere," Hill said.

"I think that the biggest thing that our leaders have to do, apart from investing in education, is make sure they become economic facilitators... and not economic blockers," he added.

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