The Sawyers Primary School in Trelawny has been upgraded at a cost $21 million by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), with inputs from the community.
Work done at the institution included construction of a new sanitation block to house four units for girls, and three for boys; renovation of the existing school building; changing of the roof; and installation of partitions, black boards, windows and doors.
Construction of a 129-metre perimeter fence; provision of two 1,000 gallon water tanks, and one electric water pump were also carried out. Cupboards and shelves were installed in the kitchen, and the store room was converted into a reading room.
Speaking at the handing over ceremony on April 10, General Manager for Infrastructure and Civil Works at JSIF, Andrew Neita, pointed out that Trelawny is one of a number of parishes specially targeted by the Government for infrastructural and social development, as education is a vehicle for development and a critical pillar to ensure sustainable growth and development.
“Today, we are taking another significant step forward with the official handing over of upgraded facilities. The beneficiaries, who hail from the communities of Sawyers, Mahogany Hall, Burke and Cottage, now have a modern school facility which will have a significant impact on the 106 students and six teachers,” he said.
Mr. Neita lauded the community members for their inputs in the project, noting that their contribution in kind and labour amounted to $890,000. He also praised the agricultural self-sufficiency project being run by the school.
“We also commend the community for your unrelenting efforts to address other issues within the school. I specially praise you on some self-help projects that have been carried out at the school, including changing wooden floors to concrete, replacing damaged windows, and tiling of the teachers’ bathroom,” he told the audience.
Meanwhile, Principal of the school, Mrs. Shelly-Ann Griffiths, told the gathering that the students and teachers were grateful for the work done.
“The new facilities have boosted the morale of our students, enabling them to exercise great care as they utilize them. As teachers, we do hope that the great sense of pride will eventually reflect on their academic performance,” she said.
Mrs. Griffiths called on members of the community to partner with the school to ensure that the institution is secured.
By Garfield Angus, JIS Reporter