Minister Thwaites Opens Cosmetology and Performing Arts Building at Green Pond High

Photo: Marlon Tingling Education Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites ( 3rd right), cuts the ribbon to officially open the Cosmetology and Performing Arts Building at the Green Pond High School in Montego Bay, St. James on February 19. Others (from left) are: Regional Director of the Ministry of Education’s Western offices, Dr. Michelle Pinnock; Principal of the Green Pond High, Michael Ellis; School Board Chairman, Stephen Shaw; Coordinator of the school’s Career Advancement Programme, (CAP), Keneisha Campbell; and Lloyd B. Smith.

Story Highlights

  • Education Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, on Friday (February 19), officially opened the Cosmetology and Performing Arts Building at the Green Pond High School in Montego Bay, St. James.
  • The facility, established at just over $6 million, will provide students with skills in the areas of hairdressing, beauty culture, nail technology, music, among others.
  • Minister Thwaites congratulated the school’s management for its vision in establishing the centre.

Education Minister, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, on Friday (February 19), officially opened the Cosmetology and Performing Arts Building at the Green Pond High School in Montego Bay, St. James.

The facility, established at just over $6 million, will provide students with skills in the areas of hairdressing, beauty culture, nail technology, music, among others.

Minister Thwaites congratulated the school’s management for its vision in establishing the centre.

“What you are achieving with your adjustment of curriculum, with your playing to the aptitudes of your students is exactly what is required to take them to the next level,” he said.

He encouraged the students to take advantage of the opportunity to develop skills for the labour market.

“I urge you to choose career options that have to do with employment opportunities. There are a whole web of careers and opportunities that can satisfy a market, provide you with employment and allow you the space if you want to change your career later on in life,” he pointed out.

The Education Minister also urged the residents of the Green Pond community to play an active role in the life of the institution and partner with the teachers and school administration for its development.

Principal of Green Pond High, Michael Ellis, said the centre will cater to the many students, who have shown great interest in the fields of cosmetology and the performing arts.

“Our students… have shown tremendous interest in technical and vocational education, including beauty culture and music… the cosmetology and performing arts centre will help them to practice their skills and to develop their craft,” he said.

Mr. Ellis said the centre will also prepare students for external examinations including the National Vocational Qualification of Jamaica (NVQJ), Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC), and City and Guild.

He said the aim is to produce talented students to meet the growing demand for musicians in the hospitality sector.

Just over 40 students are currently registered in the cosmetology programme with over 300 in music. Mr. Ellis said the vision is that by September 2016, those numbers will be increased significantly.

“It is projected that the number of students enlisted in the cosmetology programme will be at least 120…These will be drawn from grades 10 through 13 as well as the CAP (Career Advancement Programme). We will also be introducing our steel band programme to students at grade 10 and the upper school level,” he said.

Green Pond High School, which was opened in 2005, has 1, 250 students on roll and an academic staff of 56.

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