In the coming years the Garrison Secondary School will be “completely transformed”.
Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones, revealed this as he, Prime Minister, Freundel Stuart, Minister of Finance, Christopher Sinckler, Minister of Housing, Michael Lashley and others gathered at the Paddock Road, St. Michael School this morning for the official renaming ceremony.
The school was renamed the Graydon Sealy Secondary School, after the school’s first principal.
Jones told the large gathering that with the availability of resources, over the next few years the school would have new infrastructure to ensure that the students, the teachers and all support staff feel comfortable. Adding that the Board of Management had already shown the concept for the refurbishment to the Ministry of Education and it looked “absolutely remarkable”.
Sealy was principal of the Garrison School from 1975 until he retired in 1990. Jones said that when the Ministry decided to rename the school all associated was united in the decision of the new name, he said this was due to the level of respect and the high regard in which Sealy was held.
Joined by his wife Milanese and two daughters, Ruth and Paula, the 93-year-old told the audience that he was “overwhelmed” by the honour conferred on him but warned that education was not for the faint hearted- “especially for teachers of the so called lower secondary school”.
“Thank you for deeming me worthy of such an honour, I am deeply moved by this gesture, my heart is touched by your out pouring of love throughout the years. Should children be required to sit the Common Entrance because they are at 11 plus or because they are ready?” he asked.
“If the score on that exam is an accurate gauge of their academic ability why are children with lower following the curriculum as those with high scores?”
To the present students he advised, “know that your academic potential is not limited or determined by your performance in one exam on one day. Be confident in the knowledge that God had endowed you with the ability … but you must be willing to work to achieve the success, so be inspired by the countless Garrisonians who are making their mark in this nation and far beyond”.
The Prime Minister added that the Garrison School should be proud of how far there have come since the gates were first opened in 1975. He said he had never accepted the description that was made between older secondary schools and newer secondary schools. He said when one came to the Garrison Secondary School they could get the best education.
“So this school has nothing of which to feel ashamed, the students who come to this school have nothing of which to feel ashamed. I have always argued that launching any institution bears some resemblance to giving birth to a child, you know what you have produced but you do not know where it is going to end up,” he said. (KC)