While students of the St. Andrew High School for Girls were sitting their Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) in Economics on Labour Day (May 23), Minister of State for Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Julian Robinson, joined past students in sprucing up the institution’s Joan Reader Vocational Block.
Named after a former Principal of the institution, the ground floor of the block is being refurbished as part of the Class of 1963’s Labour Day and jubilee activities.
The State Minister was among a handful of men, who were assisting the ladies, some of whom attended the institution 50 years ago.
Mr. Robinson told JIS News that he was supporting the project both as Member of Parliament for the South East St. Andrew constituency in which the school is located, and as a long time aficionado of the institution, where several of his family members attended and served.
Prior to stopping by the St. Andrew High School project, the State Minister participated in a number of other activities.
“I just came from the Nannyville Basic School where we were doing some painting and retiling. I was at the Merrion Road Basic School, where a Sagicor team is doing an entire facelift there; prior to that we decided to take on a senior citizen’s house in Woodford Park, where we changed out the zinc and we are also painting there,” he said.
Mr. Robinson said the support for the various Labour Day projects in his constituency is “very good”.
“As you know, Labour Day is all voluntary activity. As Members of Parliament we contribute some of the material, the paint and that kind of thing. That has been our contribution and physically going around and assisting as well, but the residents have actually been very supportive in all the areas. We discussed among ourselves some of the projects that we would assist and I am very encouraged by the support we have gotten so far,” he said.
In the meantime, Member of the Class of 1963 and former Education Minister, Maxine Henry-Wilson, who was spearheading the Labour Day project, explained that Joan Reader was a Vice Principal of the institution when her group enrolled in 1963. “And so to honour her, we thought that we would keep the block in as pristine a condition as we can,” she explained.
“St. Andrew offers a diverse education, we are focused on the academic but we are also focused on optimizing all the various talents and abilities so we have a vocational block. We also have several learning centres and resources centres. As you see it is a really well developed campus and the past students have been very instrumental (in its development), she noted.
Mrs. Henry-Wilson said the group’s activities will continue tomorrow with the honouring of 12 of their surviving teachers at a luncheon. They will cap off the celebrations with an evening with the Merritone on Saturday at the Waterfalls club on Old Hope Road to raise funds to renovate a science laboratory at the institution.
Contact: Andrea Braham