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25 graduate, despite challenges at Sandy Bay Secondary

25 graduate, despite  challenges at Sandy Bay Secondary

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Despite the many challenges faced by the 2017 graduating class of the Sandy Bay Secondary School (SBSS), 25 endured to the end.

Principal of the school Brendon Child said five years ago in September 2012, a group of 54 students who appeared “timid and lost” enrolled at the SBSS. Of these, 25 graduated on July 5 at a ceremony at the Sandy Bay Seventh Day Adventist Church

“The talented, but challenged group was faced with vexing challenges,” Child said as he delivered his report. He said the challenges included teacher shortages in the areas of Math, Information Technology, Principles of Business, Office Procedure and Social Studies for the three terms in Form Five. Other challenges included the damage caused to the community by torrential rains in November 2016 and the absence of a science lab.

Despite these shortcomings, the principal cited academics, sports and music as some of the areas in which the school performed well. He also mentioned graduate Sealron Williams, who is a member of the Windward Islands Under-15 cricket squad.

Addressing the graduates, Child said, “You have the potential to be all you want to be…Soar to the sky.”

In her address, featured speaker Keisha Sutherland used her life story as an example, as she spoke on the theme: “ Our greatest highs come from conquering our greatest lows. We’ve conquered the sea, now we’re ready for the ocean.”

Sutherland disclosed that during her days at school, she didn’t always have it all, but she was taught responsibility while assisting her mother and grandmother who were a farmer and vendor, respectively and by taking care of her own pig and goat.

The guest speaker told the audience that at secondary school, while she always had lunch, she developed the technique of offering to buy snacks for others to ensure that she always got a snack at breaktime.

She said at Community College, she was chided by one of her teachers who told her that she would fail the class because she didn’t speak fluent English. 

“Today, I stand before you a lawyer. I told you my life story because everyone has the potential to work, but it’s up to them if they want to use it. See your challenges, gird your strength. No matter your condition, you are able to conquer it, based on your own self-resolution. You have the potential to be all that you want to be. Soar to the sky,” Sutherland encouraged. 

Valedictorian Genoy Nanton advised her classmates that when faced with a hard task, they should not look at the hard task, but how great the outcome would be. She copped four of the subject awards and received the trophy for Most Disciplined Student. Genoy has her sights set on becoming an accountant.

An emotional innovation of the ceremony was the presentation of tokens of thanks to parents by each of the graduates.

Parliamentary representative for the area Montgomery Daniel and a representative from the Ministry of Education were present at the ceremony.(GHJ)

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