About JEIJOur StandardObjectiveMission StatementVision StatementExecutive Members
The training of judges in Jamaica, whether it be in specific subject areas or in general judgecraft, has traditionally not had the benefit of a structured approach. Training has been, in many cases, been organised based on when sponsorship is available and in accordance with the mandate of the respective sponsors. In most cases, training was organised for weekends, when it was possible to get judges together without disrupting the schedule of their respective courts.

This situation has been less than ideal.

The present Chief Justice, who has dedicated significant effort and resources to training, has sought to alter that paradigm and place judicial training as one of the pillars on which judicial life is based. It is with that vision in mind that she has mandated the establishment of a judicial training institute. The Judicial Education Institute of Jamaica is the result of the planning and effort that have been put into achieving the Chief Justice’s vision.

Other countries have set up judicial training facilities. Professor Jeremy Cooper, in a report to the judiciary of Cyprus entitled “Creating the Cyprus School for Judicial Training”, spoke to a framework for judicial training, which is worth emulating. He said at pages 13-14:

“…in 2015 an EJTN [European Judicial Training Network] Working Group in tandem with the Executive Committee of the ENCJ [European Network of Councils of Judges] set about laying down the principles upon which judicial training should be conducted. These principles were adopted by both organisations in 2016. They form an admirable framework upon which to build the Cyprus School for Judicial Training.

The principles are as follows:

11.1. Judicial training is a multidisciplinary and practical type of training, essentially intended for the transmission of professional techniques and values complementary to legal education.

11.2. All judges and prosecutors should receive initial training before or on their appointment.

11.3. All judges should have the right to regular continuous training after appointment and throughout their careers and it is their responsibility to undertake it. Every Member State should put in place systems that ensure judges are able to exercise this right and responsibility.

11.4. Training is part of the normal working life of a judge and a prosecutor. All judges and prosecutors should have time to undertake training as part of the normal working time, unless it exceptionally jeopardises the service of justice.

11.5. In accordance with the principles of judicial independence the design, content and delivery of judicial training are exclusively for national institutions responsible for judicial training to determine.

11.6. Training should primarily be delivered by judges and prosecutors who have been previously trained for this purpose.

11.7. Active and modern educational techniques should be given primacy in judicial training.

11.8. Member States should provide national institutions responsible for judicial training with sufficient funding and other resources to achieve their aims and objectives.

11.9. The highest judicial authorities should support judicial training.”


The Judicial Education Institute of Jamaica will seek to achieve these laudable goals.

Aspirant and Newly appointed judges are required to undergo a three day orientation programme prior to the commencement of their duties.
Each Newly appointed judge will be assigned a mentor.
Judicial Officers are required to attend continued judicial education programmes nine days per year.
Where possible, judicial education is to be confined to juridical days commencing on Wednesdays and concluding on Fridays.
Budget allocation for Judicial Education should be adequate to cover all associated costs.
The Budget for Judicial Education is to be provided by the government and donors where appropriate.
To analyse the Judiciary and support staff and identify areas which require strengthening through training (this includes both topics to be studied and processes to be improved).
To engage in research both to identify and prepare programmes that respond to the judiciary and community’s perceptions of judicial weakness as well as to evaluate their impact.
To ensure that its faculty is not only competent but is trained and skilled in interactive learning techniques essential for adult education.
To prepare teaching plans and tools; present and evaluate sessions.
To provide judges and support staff with information to improve the quality of justice.
To provide and catalogue judicial tool; manuals, bench books and other essential legal and judicial information, both in print and electronically.
To organize in partnership with the judiciary judicial feedback and mentoring systems.
To seek sponsorship (where appropriate) to fund continuing judicial education for the judiciary and support staff.
To preserve public trust and confidence in the judiciary by ensuring that judges are impartial, competent, efficient and effective in the performance of their duties.
Achieving Court Excellence through Continuous Training.
To Become the centre of excellence for judicial education in the Caribbean.