- Rev. Thwaites commended all of the stakeholders who responded in the immediate aftermath of the incident.
- Member of Parliament for North East Manchester, where Holmwood is located, Audley Shaw, who also visited the school on Thursday.
- Holmwood’s Principal, Paul Bailey, said the interventions were welcomed.
Education Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, has praised the persons and organizations extending support to bereaved students and staff at Holmwood Technical High School in Christiana, Manchester.
The support was extended to help them come to terms with last Wednesday’s (September 25) tragic road accident in the parish which claimed the lives of four of the institution’s students and injured several others.
Speaking with journalists during a visit to the school on September 26, Rev. Thwaites commended all of the stakeholders who responded in the immediate aftermath of the incident, led by representatives from the Education Ministry’s Region V office in Mandeville, Manchester, to provide counseling and grief management support.
“Everyone who we have in the region (came) to help. And what is…even better (is that) counselors, principals, (and) teachers from other schools have just rallied. I challenge them (to) not only (do so) in times of tragedy, but in times of ordinary operation. There is so much sharing that can happen, there is so much improvement in the operation and outcomes of the schools (that can occur) if we all pull together in the way that this tragedy has brought us to do,” Rev. Thwaites stated.
His sentiments were endorsed by Member of Parliament for North East Manchester, where Holmwood is located, Audley Shaw, who also visited the school on Thursday.
“I absolutely agree. It has been an outpouring (of support) from the other schools…Christiana High, Spaldings High, (and) Knox College. I think that even outside of crisis moments like this, the cross-fertilization of counselors from different schools, interacting like this, must be good for the (school) system,” he said.
Holmwood’s Principal, Paul Bailey, said the interventions were welcomed. He noted that students and teachers were reduced to tears after the school received the news, pointing out that “when we assembled (in the auditorium where the disclosure was made) some persons fainted.”
“So it was really good to get the outside assistance because we were not in a position to assist ourselves much…it definitely helped,” he added.