New Secondary school for Union
December 22, 2006
New Secondary school for Union

The $9.5 million contract for the construction of a secondary school in Union Island has been signed and Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves regards it as a political feather in his proverbial cap.

“The political party which I head has never represented the Southern Grenadines, yet we are the one who built a secondary school in 1975 and we are the ones who are now building a modern secondary school,” he said at a signing ceremony this week.{{more}}

Equipped with two science labs and 12 classrooms, the school which was designed by Molten Mayers Architectures is expected to cater to the needs of approximately 400 students in the Southern Grenadines.

Staff living quarters will also be constructed, but this aspect had not been included in the contract signed by the government and contractor Gibson’s Construction Limited.

“Teachers on the mainland are usually reluctant to teach in the Southern Grenadines so the living quarters will be given much prominence,” said Education Minister, Girlyn Miguel said.

Another crucial element in this new school will be the counselors’ rooms.

“We have to make sure we counsel our children in the midst of the violence we are seeing in schools,” she said.

In a further phase of construction student dorms will also be built to cater for the students who will be attending the school from the other islands in the Southern Grenadines.

Prime Minister Gonsalves said that the government would have loved to build the entire project in one phase but said it was not financially possible.

The European Union is providing $6.9 million and the remainder is to be financed by the government. Construction will take two years.

The long awaited Union Island School will kick start what is expected to be a busy couple of years for school construction. Some $26.6 million will be spent to construct three primary schools in Fairhall, Edinboro and Bequia and the Barroullie Secondary School. This will be done under the Caribbean Development Bank’s Basic Education Programme.