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Outstanding Girls’ High School students rewarded

Outstanding Girls’ High School students rewarded

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by Jamila Soso-Vincent 20.MAR.09

As part of its quest for “academic excellence and exemplary discipline,” the Girls’ High School (GHS) awarded its students for outstanding performance in the 2007/2008 academic year at a ceremony held on Friday, March 13th at the Peace Memorial Hall.{{more}}

Prizes, certificates and trophies were bestowed upon the students for their performances in the various forms in the school, as well as their performance in co-curricular and extra curricular activities.

Twenty-six girls received book prizes for placing 1st and 2nd in forms 1 – 3 for the 2007/2008 school year. Certificates of commendable performance were also awarded to 60 students who did not place first or second, but gained an overall pass mark of 80 per cent and over.

The main event saw a whopping 117 girls receive awards for passes in 12, 11, 10 and 9 Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) subjects. The top three performers, Chryste Da Silva, Shecania Small and Jai-Len Williams, gained 12 passes; with Da Silva receiving the Top Performer trophy for gaining all grade ones. Her success equals that of last year’s Top Performer Colette Charles, now a 2nd year student at the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College.

Additionally, special awards were given for the Best All-Round student in the Junior School, Middle School and Fourth Form. These were won by Chelsea Alexander, Kayrel Edwards and Courtnae Bailey respectively. The GHS Awards for Drama, Steel-Pan, Sports and Girl Guiding went to Leeonney Bentick, Courtnae Bailey, Alicia Cox and Olivia Haslam respectively.

Feature speaker Sylvia Jack, retired Senior Education Officer and former English Teacher at the GHS, had much praise for those who were awarded and encouraged others to strive for such excellence. “Aim higher and higher… it is your best that counts.”

Jack further beseeched the students to be well-rounded individuals, and to learn from their past mistakes but not be overcome by them. “You can’t seize your future by being obsessed by the past!” she insisted.

She reminded students that a sound education is the key to freedom; with which much greatness can be achieved. Jack explained that any disadvantage (whether physically or otherwise) can be overcome with proper education. She cited notable figures such as Stevie Wonder, Barack Obama, Albert Einstein and Helen Keller as examples of such.

Moreover, Jack pressed upon the students the importance of discipline and following rules. “We need rules to maintain a life of discipline… Character can be improved by self-discipline.” She also highlighted the necessity of involvement from parents, teachers and the community in moulding young minds. “Virtuous character is not developed in isolation!”

In her opening remarks, Headmistress Andrea Bowman expressed her pride in the achievement of GHS students. She also noted that the school has always been a beacon of excellence, and under her leadership the staff will toil to keep it as such. “Our school is by no means perfect, but we have a great deal to be proud of… and preserve.”

Bowman shared some of the achievement of the school. They include: a Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) top 5 ranking among schools in the region; placing 3rd in the RBTT-sponsored Young Leaders competition in 2008; placing 3rd in the Panorama competition in 2008, and placing 1st in the girls’ division at the Interschool Sports 2009.

Also present at the ceremony were Minister of Education Girlyn Miguel, Minister of Culture René Baptiste, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education Laura Browne, Sally-Ann, Lady Ballantyne, the Governor General’s Deputy Monica Dacon, and Senior Education Officers Deborah Bacchus and Elizabeth Walker.

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