Government breaks soil for New School in Bequia
March 23, 2007
Government breaks soil for New School in Bequia

Parents have to get more involved in their children’s education and avoid the urge to be unduly critical of teachers.

This is the view of the Parliamentary Representative for the Northern Grenadines, Dr Godwin Friday, which he expressed when he addressed the official site opening ceremony for the Bequia Anglican Primary School last Friday.{{more}}

While he applauded the plans for the new EC$6 million school, Dr Friday stressed that it was important to note that education has to be more than just a new building.

“We must not get too much ahead of ourselves, what we are doing here is not building a school, we are constructing a building to house the school. The school is already in existence,” Dr Friday said.

Dr Friday told the large gathering that while Government had a part to play, the school’s development will take place around the continued care of the teachers, the parents, and the community at large.

Dr Friday said that he considered the school project to be one of great importance, which has a lot of promise.

Meanwhile Senior Education officer Tyrone Burke said that the Government needed to be given the highest commendation for the priority, resources and time given to the development of the educational system.

He said that the Bequia Anglican Primary School was built over 50 years ago and serves the community well. He commended the principal and teachers for doing a good job of educating the students that pass through the school.

He however warned them not to become complacent.

“The education revolution has taught us that the standards accepted five years ago would not be good enough today,” Burke said.

When he spoke, Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves thanked the teachers of the school for their forbearance. He reiterated his Government’s commitment to education and told his listeners that early childhood education was not going to be left out of the equation.

“In this five year period until 2010, we will have universal early childhood education from age three to five,” Dr Gonsalves said.

Each of the three primary schools being built under the Caribbean Development Bank’s EC$26 million Basic Education Project, including the one in Bequia, will be equipped with early childhood centres for 50 students.

Education Minister Girlyn Miguel reiterated her Ministry’s achievements and stressed their success in the area of education. Meanwhile Herman Belmar, Deputy Director for Grenadines’s Affairs said that he had a feeling of nostalgia seeing the project started.

He said that about 10 years ago he wrote the Ministry of Education and informed them that school was in a desperate state. He said that repairs were done but they weren’t good enough.

“Today I am proud to stand here to see the beginning of work on a new school after ten years of silent protest,’ said Belmar.

Bequia resident Selma Duncan trilled the audience which included students of the Bequia Anglican School with two beautiful poems. The students from the Bequia Anglican School also did a dance and a song at the Ceremony.

Just over a year ago, the Bequia Anglican Primary School was relocated to a temporary facility on lands owned by the Port Elizabeth Friendly Society.

When the new school is completed it will up the school’s capacity from 301 to 450.