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Dr. Oliver opens new school at Rose Cottage

Dr. Oliver opens new school at Rose Cottage

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Discouragement serves as a stumbling block in the lives of many, but for people like Dr Alfred Oliver, it only serves to propel them towards their dreams.{{more}}

And with that attitude, one of his most profound dreams was realised last Sunday.

With the continuing thrust of the Education Revolution in St Vincent and the Grenadines, the Rose Cottage Private Primary School was officially opened to the public with a ceremony on September 27, 2009.

Oliver, who has been living in Canada for the past 37 years, told the intimate gathering that he endured a lot of trials in his life to get to the point where he is today. Even with an established dental practice in Canada, Oliver said his dream of building a school was never too far in the back of his mind.

But when he shared his idea of building a school in the area where he grew up, he said, it was often frowned upon. But that never stopped him from pursuing his dream. With the support of some education stalwarts, Oliver started to see his dream take shape.

The school was supposed to open its doors last year, but due to set backs it had to be put back until September this year.

Currently, there are 11 students enrolled at Rose Cottage in a facility with 11 classrooms, all with brand new furniture, to accommodate up to 25 children each. The school is designed to cater to children from the kindergarten level all the way up to the secondary level.

It was noted that one of the children in the kindergarten class is hearing impaired and specialist teachers are already in place to help with the child’s development.

In his address at the official opening, Oliver said he is pleased by the outcome of his efforts and strongly believes that the school will be at the top level in the near future.

“I will ensure that everything is done to make this a reality,” he stated. Oliver confessed that he put his blood, sweat and tears – along with a lot of his own money – to get the school underway.

“I didn’t care what the cost was, I just knew I wanted a school,” he said.

Oliver added that one of the school’s main aims is not to discriminate against any child.

“Every child has a brain… Once there is life, there is hope … so even if your child is blind, bring them to the school because everyone has something to learn,” he added.

The dentist expects that by next year the school will accommodate more than 150 students. “When children leave this institution, they must be extremely smart because we have dedicated teachers with tons of experience,” he added.

Special emphasis will be placed on early childhood education, remedial education and counseling.

Delivering brief remarks, manager of the school Esther Carr-Taylor said although she had already retired from the teaching profession, when the idea was pitched to her, she could not pass up the opportunity.

Carr-Taylor described the school as “unique in its approach to teaching and learning”, adding that students with learning disabilities will be accepted and nurtured.

The school also boasts a sickbay, music room and computer lab, and a science lab will soon be added.

Johnston Taylor is the acting principal.

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