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What kind of men would we like our boys to become?

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Reverend Adolf Davis, a past student of the St Vincent Grammar School (SVGS) and the Superintendent Minister of the Kingstown Chateaubelair Circuit of the Methodist Church, this week put a most important question to a few hundred of our nation’s young men.{{more}}

He asked them what kind of men would they like to become.

The outspoken Methodist minister asked the thought provoking question of the student population of the all boy SVGS while delivering the message at a church service held on Wednesday, September 21 to mark the school’s 108th anniversary.

The minister’s question also speaks to the responsibility of the wider community in helping our children, in this case, our boys to achieve their potential. What are we doing or not doing to assist them? How do we give back to our respective schools?

Headmaster of the SVGS Curtis King realises the important role the past students of his school can and should play in moulding and supporting the young men, and for the last few years, he has been advocating for closer ties to be established between the past and present students. For decades, this school has provided a solid secondary education to male students who place in the top 15 per cent of the Caribbean Primary Exit Assessment (CPEA), which was preceded by the Common Entrance Exam and before that the Scholarship and Entrance Exam.

All of this country’s prime ministers are or were past students of the school, as are/were the majority of our male parliamentarians and senior public servants over the years. Among this country’s medical doctors, lawyers, engineers, teachers, agriculturists, farmers, clergymen, journalists and businessmen, Grammar School boys (and the girls’ who walked their corridors) are prominent. Theoretically, therefore, the SVGS has the most influential and resource-rich past student community in SVG, and they should be having a much more positive influence on the present student body than they presently are.

Alumni associations around the world are known for their vital role in helping to generate resources necessary to enhance the delivery of education at their alma maters and in playing a role in helping the current crop of students to navigate life’s path.

The SVGS does not have to look very far for an example of how crucial these associations are than their next door neighbour – the Girls’ High School (GHS), which has, for decades, had active branches of alumni both here in SVG and in at least three cities overseas.

But for reasons that are difficult to fathom, repeated efforts to revive and sustain the Grammar School ‘Old Boys’ association have not been very successful.

The present Headmaster is steadfast in his efforts to bring the past students back into the fold and he should be supported.

On Wednesday also, the SVGS held an open day to which past students were invited. The hope was, that coming out of the process, an alumni association could be formed as the education process has to be a partnership between home, school and the rest of the community.

Past students have yet another opportunity tomorrow to reach out to their school as the anniversary celebrations continue at 1:30 pm at the Arnos Vale Playing Field where a family fun day for both past and present students and their families will be held. We urge all those with links to the school to attend and support so that our boys will become the men that we will like them to be.

Happy 108th anniversary St Vincent Grammar School!

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