New Multi Purpose Court for Alston High School


Alston High School is now the proud recipient of a new multi purpose hard court courtesy of the Sports Development Foundation (SDF) and State Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Michael Stern.
Speaking at the official opening ceremony of the new facility held on Thursday (April 22) on the school’s compound at Alston, Clarendon, Mr. Stern who is the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Western Clarendon stated that sports and education are key, and of paramount importance to the Government.
“You have to cognizant of green areas for sports and we will never be able to keep our people fit if we do not have green spaces for people to play, for people to stay fit,” he said.
He noted that the multi-purpose court represents a huge investment from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) with the $5.4 million for the construction of the court $3.2 million having come from the CDF. The remaining $2.2 million was donated by the SDF.
Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture and Sports, Senator Warren Newby, who delivered the keynote address, said Minister Hon. Olivia Grange is committed to the advancement of youth and sports in Jamaica.
“The Minister undertook and committed in 2007 to the development of a national sports policy, ‘Sports for all’. She intends fulsome participation of individuals, communities, organisations and the state in the development of sports in Jamaica,” he said.
Senator Newby said that the policy speaks to the development of sporting facilities, support to grassroots sporting movements, co-ordination of programmes between high schools, communities and sporting federations.
“The intention is to have improved sporting facilities because we have been producing world class athletes on less than world class facilities and one can only wonder what will happen in few years when the talent that which God has given us is matched with the facilities that are equal to the talents. We are going to become so powerful that people will live here just to experience what sports is like in their lives,” he told the gathering.
Senator Newby explained that the policy supports grassroots sporting initiatives. “We recognised very well that honing the skills and talents result in the sort of performances that has dominated the world stage within the last number of years. The Ministry wants co-ordination of the programmes between the high schools, the communities and the sporting federations that we can unearth the talent, groom the talent, manage the talent and showcase it in such a way that it rebounds to the benefit of the entire country,” he said.
Coach and teacher at Alston High School, Mr.Wilton Williams said the hard court will provide a boost for their physical education programme, as now the school will be able to compete in Inter-Secondary Schools Association (ISSA) competitions.
“The court has been a boost for us because we had problems entering ISSA competitions last year. Because we lack the court facility we were not able to be apart of the programme. So now that the court is here we start training and we hope to do well in the ISSA competitions in general,” he said.
He added that the court will also facilitate a better teaching and learning environment, and will help to propel the school into the sports limelight.
“It has been a tremendous thing for Alston High School. Without it we were playing partially on the road and it was really bad for us so we are really happy that Sports Development Foundation along with the MP can come on board and really help the school to get this court. We really appreciate it and it makes my work easier. Our school will make a name in sports and will achieve great things,” he said.

JIS Social