A former teacher has thrown his hat in the ring to become Jersey’s next Children and Education Minister.
Reform Jersey’s Deputy Rob Ward will be standing for election by the States Assembly at their next sitting next week.
“It is important that the next Minister has a detailed knowledge of education and the issues facing children as we emerge from the pandemic and respond to the outcomes of the reviews that have been undertaken,” the Deputy, who Chairs the Children and Home Affairs Scrutiny Panel, and the Care of Children Review Panel, explained.
“I have 25 years of experience in the teaching profession, experience of leading the Jersey branch of the National Education Union, and leadership of the Children and Education Scrutiny Panel through my chairmanship. Throughout my professional career I have worked to help children develop their skills, abilities and life chances.”
It comes after a string of resignations linked to the portfolio.
Last year, Senator Sam Mézec resigned as Children and Housing Minister to support a vote of no confidence in the Chief Minister in November.
Then in January this year, Senator Tracey Vallois stepped down as Education Minister, saying that her “fight to be listened to has been dismissed” after she expressed concerns on the covid school return plans.
Pictured: Deputy Jeremy Maçon most recently held the role, but stepped down amid a police investigation last month.
In the wake of these resignations, the Chief Minister decided to reshuffle portfolios, appointing Deputy Jeremy Maçon to the new role of Minister for Children and Education.
However, just under two months later, Deputy Maçon was removed from his role after he was arrested. Last month, he confirmed his resignation from the ministerial role and said he had "every intention of fighting to clear my name." The exact nature of the police investigation concerning him has never been disclosed.
In the meantime, Assistant Education Minister Deputy Scott Wickenden has been fulfilling many of the Education Minister’s duties, and has taken part in several recent school visits, including to La Sente.
Deputy Trevor Pointon, meanwhile, is an Assistant Education Minister with responsibility for the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service.
Pictured: The two current Assistant Education Ministers, Deputies Scott Wickdenden and Trevor Pointon.
Deputy Ward added: “It is time to bring stability to this ministerial role and ensure that there is genuine advocacy for children and education at the table of the Council of Ministers.”
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