Jamaica has been noted in the Guinness Book of World records for the most churches per square kilometer. But I believe they should also add Ocho Rios to their book for the most Preparatory Schools, also known as Private Schools per square kilometer.
Ocho Rios has evolved over the years with a vast up growth of privately owned institutions. There are a wide variety of schools that cater to people with different needs and demands. There are prep schools for every pocket, prep schools for every class and prep schools for every knowledge base. In essence, a catalogue of schools can be created to highlight each schools pros and cons.
To determine the top schools in Ocho Rios, one would look at the performance of the school. We could use their consistency over the past three to five (3-5) years to create a criterion in order to mark which ones are at least the top five. To claim the top spots, a school must be performing “above average”. At least 26% of the private schools in Jamaica perform above average. There are 242 and counting private schools in Jamaica with only sixty-four (64) of these performing “above average”. These 64 are classified as the “Top Performers” in the private school league.
These schools are assessed by Educate Jamaica’s “Gold Standard Criteria”. The Gold Standard tracks the performance of these prep schools’ progress over a three to five (3-5) year period. They take into consideration the school’s performance over the period. The school must be able to prove their ability to be consistent over the period.
The Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) plays a major role in deciding the top schools. It is basically the major factor in measuring the school’s performance.
Without further ado, the following are the top schools in the Ocho Rios area:
- MarJam Preparatory School
- Tomlinsons Christian Academy
- United Learning Centre
- John’s Preparatory School
- Ocho Rios Preparatory School
These schools have been very consistent over the years and have been looked upon as the Jamaican term says the “top-a-top” schools of the Ocho Rios area. They have been dominant in their craft and have managed to continue to muster demand among the population. Parents flock to these schools as they believe they will give their child a greater chance at achieving excessively.
There are many schools that are close to the mark of being top schools but are not quite there yet. They are trying their utmost best but any school can be faced with difficulties which will in turn hinder their progress. The gold standards criteria do not include schools with five or less students sitting the Grade Six Achievement Test in their analysis. With this criterion, it knocks several new and upcoming schools off the list of top schools in the area. These schools have a smaller population and are therefore not include in the race for Top school.
With all this data collected and analyzed, it has boiled down to several schools in the Ocho Rios area to be regarded as the Top Schools. One could only imagine their performance analysis for these institutions to be revered as the top ones.