Veteran Educator to Receive PM’s Medal of Appreciation

Photo: JIS Photographer Veteran Educator, Mr. Eann Singh, who will receive the Prime Minister’s Medal of Appreciation. Mr. Singh is the Principal for Vaughansfield Primary and Infant School in St. James.

Being a teacher is more than just imparting knowledge; it means dedication and commitment to the education process, making it easier for persons to learn.

This is what Mr. Eann Singh has proven in his 43 years of service to the education system in the country.

Mr. Singh, who is among 40 educators to be honoured with the Prime Minister’s Medal of Appreciation this year, has been in the education system since January 1970, beginning at the Springfield All-age School in St. Elizabeth.

The Prime Minister’s Medal of Appreciation for service to education will be presented on Sunday, June 9, at a ceremony to be held at Jamaica House.

After trying his hand at Marketing and Public Health, Mr. Singh finally realized that his calling was to be an educator.

“Teaching was the only profession where I could do what is required of me… I love children and was encouraged by my former principal to become a teacher,” Mr. Singh tells JIS News.

Although Mr. Singh has served at other institutions, his greatest work has been at his alma mater ,Vaughansfield Primary and Infant School in St. James, where as Principal he established an independent water supply system and constructed a library and computer laboratory with the help of past students and other sponsors, such as the Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS).

Now on pre-retirement leave, Mr. Singh says his greatest success has been the growth of Vaughansfield Primary under his leadership.

“When I became principal of the school it had no furniture, no water, no roofing or flooring. I’m really happy that we now have water, flooring, a computer lab, library and fencing. I’m proud of where I’ve taken this school,” he says.

Mr. Singh also notes that while serving as President of the Upper St. James District Association, he organized a reading fair for all six schools in that area.

“I believe that this position pushed me to give more than was expected of me, as whatever was necessary for the children’s or teacher’s sake, I thought it my duty as the President to be able to give,” he tells JIS News.

This is not the first time that the educator will be receiving an award for his outstanding service, as he was recognised by the Jamaica Teaching Council in 2011, and the Caribbean Education Association and Carlong Publishers in 2010.

The school’s infant department has also benefited from the work of the educator, as he collaborated with the Palmyra Foundation to provide text books for the children.

Mr. Singh has also given valuable service to the 4-H Club, for which he was recognized in 2010, receiving the St. James 4-H Club’s Invaluable Service Award.

Because of his passion for children, Mr. Singh serves in his community as a member of the Children of Faith Parenting Group, which assists needy parents and children, especially those born with HIV/AIDS. He also monitors the Tangle River Basic School in Southern St. James and volunteers as a Counsellor at the Blossom Gardens Children’s Home.

Ms. Janett Gordon, who nominated Mr. Singh for the award, tells JIS News that he is “committed to the cause of education”.

“I know him as a person who would be at any event that would promote the betterment of the education system. After meeting him through the Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA), I have watched him work relentlessly in his field,” Ms. Gordon says.

She emphasises that he is more than deserving of this award, as “he works without expecting to be rewarded and as such, should be highlighted for all the good work he has done.”

Meanwhile, Mr. Singh says he is humbled at his nomination for this award, and that his greatest wish for the education system is to see parents partnering with schools to ensure that the children become responsible adults.

Contact: Sanasha Pearson

JIS Social