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West St. George students begin term in spanking new school

West St. George students begin term in spanking new school

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Students of the West St. George Secondary School had double cause for excitement at their school assembly on Monday, September 5 – the first day of the new academic term.{{more}}

Not only have they been reunited with their school chums after a long summer break, but they have taken up residence in their school’s new $20 million campus at Belair.

Addressing the students and faculty, principal Asfo Stephens said: “This is an historic occasion! It is my desire that we are going to have… the best secondary school in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.”

Stephens said that during professional development week, he and his staff members reviewed the school’s past performance, and identified areas which need improvement and how best to achieve that.

“In order to make it the best, we have to work harder,” he asserted. “Such an effort does not come by sudden flight!”

Stephens urged the students to take care of their new facility, and to use its new resources wisely to further their education.

“With a facility of this nature, the added classrooms, computer and science labs, these are added resources for the students. Prior to this… we had to do some make-shifting!”

He also pressed upon the parents present to play their role in ensuring that students respect school property, and live up to their educational obligations.

Speaking to SEARCHLIGHT, Stephens said that although he had been anticipating the construction of the new school, he had not expected to be the principal at this time, as he had been a principal at another institution.

“The timing is right that I am here at this new and excellent facility,” he commented.

He added: “It’s going to widen the scope, in terms of available resources to the students. More and better resources should really impact on their academic development.”

Stephens noted that over the past two years, the school has been sending increasing numbers of students to sit the CXC Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate examination.

“I’m of the view that… we have to make education available to all students. If you just focus on those students who… are going to bring back the goods, in terms of the desired outcome, you are going to negate those who do not have the best chance to pass!” he explained.

Stephens also said that a homework policy and revision sessions will be enforced this year.

Minister of Education Girlyn Miguel and representative for the area Cecil McKie were also present at the school’s assembly.

McKie, who delivered a brief but rousing address, reminded the students of the progress being made in that constituency – including the new school and the impending arrival of a medical college.

“Exciting times are ahead for you!” he enthused.

Miguel also urged the students to refrain from damaging school property, and challenged them to make “dignity, discipline and achievement” their main focus in the new facility.

The West St George Secondary is still using the old furniture from its previous location. It is expected that the school will receive its new furniture by October.

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