The Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) has approved the construction and refurbishing of 244 basic schools at a cost of over $1 billion, since the start of the year.
“These projects have benefited more than 27,000 children across the island and have provided our children with more comfortable and modern classrooms to enhance learning and give them hope of a better future unhindered by poverty,” said Project Manager at JSIF, Mr. Gerald Murray.
He was speaking yesterday (December 2) at the official handing over of the Mount Salus Basic School located in Stony Hill, St. Andrew.
Mount Salus Basic School student, Ana Kay Clarke, enjoys the seesaw in the playground of her newly constructed school located in Stony Hill, St. Andrew. The school, which was built by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), was officially handed over to the community yesterday (Dec. 2).
Mr. Murray said it is a pleasure to be handing over another basic school as the JSIF “strongly believes that every child deserves an education, no matter the circumstances.” He said that JSIF is committed to nation building especially through investment in the early childhood education sector.
“While education at all levels is important, JSIF recognises the power of proper basic education because it sets the foundation for the lifelong process of learning, by equipping children with basic literacy and social skills,” he stated.
The school was constructed at a cost of $16.57 million through a grant from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), with the community contributing $601,195 in cash or kind.
Principal of Mount Salus Basic School in Stony Hill, St. Andrew, Rose Reece (right) and Project Manager, Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), Gerald Murray (2nd left) unveil a plaque at the official opening of the school on December 2. Looking are school secretary Margret White and a student.
The facility, which serves 76 students, boasts four classrooms, sanitary and kitchen facilities, office, sick bay, play area, drinking trough, new chain-link perimeter fence and furniture and equipment.
Principal of the school, Ms. Rose Reece, thanked JSIF for undertaking the project.
“It is with great pleasure that I stand here to extend our sincere gratitude to JSIF for this lovely building here and we do appreciate JSIF for the job that they have done,” Mrs. Reece said.
The new construction provides the school with a permanent and secure home, after the previous location was severely damaged during a hurricane.