Letters to the Editor

Congratulations, Dr Joyce Glasgow

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

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Dear Editor,

Some time in the late 1960s I had a biology teacher at Morant Bay High School; her name, Joyce Glasgow.

Yesterday (October 15), as I read the day's paper, I came upon an article in the Jamaica Observer, 'St Ann educator receives CD today'.

I noticed the name Joyce Glasgow.

However, among the list of schools it stated at which she taught there is no record of Morant Bay High School, but I take my chances.

“Mrs Glasgow” as we referred to her then, was our biology teacher. She knew how to capture the students' interest in the subject. I was a captive student that enjoyed biology. I still have my Stone and Cozens textbook from her class.

I found the article most interesting and instructive. The narrative on her academic development and history in teaching, from the high school to university, represented a most interesting journey. What I found instructive was her philosophy of science and scientific causes.

I had encountered the name on another occasion, but this time it read Dr Joyce Glasgow. It was during my reading of an academic journal publication 'Scientific Literacy — Its meaning and its importance for Jamaica (1985)'. When I read her scholarly work, I said to myself this person is the same “Mrs Glasgow”, my high school biology teacher.

She made the link between critical thinking and “anticipatory intelligence” and scientific literacy. I recall a lesson from her on “anticipatory intelligence” in a simple manner, and even before I had any clue of the concept, but the lesson was timeless and enduring.

It was simple. She told the class that whenever she planned a trip to Kingston she planned her route before she departed from her Duckensfield home. That was anticipatory intelligence in a simple and useful form. It may not have made the mark then, but in later life it did.

She believed that it is a mistake to argue that science is for bright students only. In her thinking, science is a transformative area of study, and that it must be taught to all students. She makes the implications in the publication 'Scientific Literacy — Its meaning and its importance for Jamaica (1985)' of the transformative and emancipating power of science. She went further and called for scientific literacy, which is taking science to the everyday-lived experience.

She belonged to a generation of teachers we are longing for; Mrs Glasgow, best wishes and strong health for the future.

Dr Joyce Glasgow, my heartiest congratulations, for a well-deserved national award.

Louis E A Moyston


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