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JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The administrators, teachers, volunteers and stakeholders of Kitson Town All-Age School are forming useful partnerships aimed at further developing the institution.
  • These partnerships involve infrastructure improvement and the establishment of support organisations.
  • The Parent Teachers Association is conducting a block drive, while the Social Development Commission is mobilising community groups to garner more support for the school.

The administrators, teachers, volunteers and stakeholders of Kitson Town All-Age School are forming useful partnerships aimed at further developing the institution.

These partnerships involve infrastructure improvement and the establishment of support organisations.

“Support is not all where we want it to be, but where we can partner we do that,” Principal of the St. Catherine-based school, Nerica Powell-Hay, told JIS News.

Mrs. Hay said the school, which is this year celebrating 50 years at its current location, has identified the construction of a perimeter fence as its priority project. A number of individuals have come together to boost this effort.

According to Mrs. Hay, the Parent Teachers Association is conducting a block drive, while the Social Development Commission is mobilising community groups to garner more support for the school.

“We are also trying to start a past students’ association, and so far individuals have expressed an interest,” she noted.
Stakeholders also demonstrated their support for the institution at Career Day 2014, held at the institution on Friday, June 13, under the theme ‘Preparing our Students for the 21st Century’.

Devon Thompson, of the Kitson Town Baptist Church, reiterated the Jamaica Baptist Union’s continued support for education in Jamaica.

“The Baptists have been very instrumental in education since the abolition of slavery. Even the land that the school sits on is a part of the legacy that was left behind by the Baptists. As a church we want to ensure that the educational capabilities of the school will be of meaning to all the students,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education’s Region 6 representative, Keisha Shirley, emphasised that in order for the children to realize their full potential, they must master reading.

“Learning to read is a right. A reading society is the core of developing a society that is free of poverty. If we all learn to read, we will have peace and development,” the literacy specialist who participates in the school’s ‘Operation Turnaround’ programme said. Among the objectives of the programme is the improvement in the school’s literacy rate.

Attorney at law, Nophia Morgan, who is a volunteer at the school, underscored the importance of lending a hand in the community. She pointed out that she spent years in the community as a child, and felt the need to contribute to the institution.

“It’s important that you volunteer. You must give back. Always remember where you came from,” she urged.

Meanwhile, guest speaker, Bishop C. Alanzo Whyte, encouraged the students to go forward into the 21st century with purpose.

“For us to live in peace we have to have respect…we must protect our minds and we must also have tenacity,” he said.

Explaining the rationale for the career day event, Principal Hay noted that the objective of the organisers was to get students thinking about their future and how their career choice could impact the nation positively.

“Thinking all of these innovative skills will help you to make an impact as workers, leaders and as citizens. What we really want to do is to help you fit comfortably in the society of the 21st century,” she told the student, some of whom were attired to represent their careers of choice.

She said educators have realised that reading, writing and arithmetic alone, are not sufficient to equip students.  More focus is therefore being placed on critical thinking.

Exhibitors and presenters included the Jamaica Defence Force, the Jamaica Constabulary Force, the Jamaica Information Service, the National Housing Trust; and Angels Book and Variety Store.