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Dr. J.P Eustace officially opened, ‘Take pride in striving for excellence’

Dr. J.P Eustace officially opened, ‘Take pride in striving for excellence’

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The spanking new $6.3 million campus of the Dr. J.P. Eustace Memorial Secondary School at Lower Edinboro was officially opened last week with an elaborate ceremony.{{more}}

The established secondary institution with a rich heritage and history boasts some of the most modern facilities in the country, including a fully equipped, 40-station, state-of-the-art computer lab and fully functional library.

Besides being attired neatly in their uniform, the 600 students wore broad smiles, the same smiles that they wore on September 7, 2009, on the first day of classes at the new facility.

Perhaps the most exuberant of all the persons gathered at the ceremony was area representative and Minister of Urban Development and Culture Rene Baptiste. She noted that while they were confronted by challenges along the way, “this is a dream that we are now realising and we must embrace it fully”.

She implored students to adopt a new attitude in their new surroundings and make the most of the their new facilities, which include 21 classrooms.

“Remember to respect the school uniform… Let us make a new pledge to become a model secondary school.”

The Minister spoke of plans to develop a vibrant music programme at the school, as well as to offer evening classes in five subject areas and five skills.

Minister of Education Girlyn Miguel highlighted one of the main aims of the government – the reduction of poverty through Education. Miguel said the recently concluded country poverty assessment showed that there was a decline in poverty.

Miguel explained that while the poverty index was 37.5 per cent and the indigence level was at 25.7 per cent in 1996, today they are 30.2 per cent and 2.9 per cent, respectively.

The Education minister also urged students to make full use of the opportunity given to them in their new surroundings and facilities.

“I expect students to realise their full potential and take pride in striving for excellence,” she added.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves praised his government’s Universal Access to Secondary Education programme, noting it had grown by “leaps and bounds”.

While delivering the keynote address at the official opening ceremony, Gonsalves exhorted students not to underestimate the importance of Education in reducing poverty.

“It is remarkable what we can do through Education despite the circumstances faced around the world,” Gonsalves added.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education Laura Browne said the Ministry’s aim is to increase pre-primary education; develop a system to detect learning disabilities; and to enhance quality, efficiency, effectiveness in Education by 2012.

Grace Eustace, daughter of John Pamenos Eustace, cut the ribbon to declare the campus open.

The Urban Expression Company performed a cultural item and the fifth form students sang.

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