Parents are one of the biggest problems facing education today, says Alleyne School principal Julia Beckles.
Addressing Alleyne’s Annual Speech Day yesterday in the school’s auditorium at Belleplaine in St Andrew, Beckles said the issue educators faced was the undermining influence of parents and guardians on students.
“We will continue to struggle to build a high performance culture in schools until parents and guardians return to valuing education,” she said, while stressing that the Alleyne School would continue to devise methods to assist parents.
For the academic year 2012–2013, the rural school recorded significant improvements. The overall school’s percentage pass mark was 84 per cent, an improvement over the year 2011–2012 when it stood at 78 per cent.
Excellent results were recorded in agricultural science, EDPM, food and nutrition, home management, history, social studies, Spanish, social studies, theatre arts and woods, in which students attained 100 per cent passes.
Outstanding results were also reported in English A, English B, information technology, integrated science and principles of business.
In most of the other subjects, commendable performances were registered. Beckles applauded her staff for the achievements made with the students. Nevertheless, she noted that there was still much work to be done so as to avoid any students falling through the cracks.
“In reviewing most organizations one views the bottomline as the measure of financial health. In schools the results at CSEC are considered the school’s bottomline,” the principal said.
“If this measure is applied, then the Alleyne School will be deemed a healthy organization. However, in the midst of our celebrations we are not oblivious to the reality that there are many students who are not represented by this 84 per cent.
“We are concerned that oft-times we begin with large numbers of students who do not make the journey to CSEC. We are also concerned about those who even after being given a second chance, in the fourth year are unable to write the exams.
“As a team we desire that more of our children experience this sense of achievement. In light of this, we need to revisit the options which our students make at the fourth year as well as implement some new initiatives with a bid to improving our numbers at CSEC while maintaining our high grade profile,” she added.
This year there was also more to shout about in terms of the boys. There was a noticeable increase in the number of them who made the honour roll, and Beckles said she looked forward to this becoming the norm in the future.
Of those males, Shemar Yearwood was the Most Outstanding Student. He attained six Grade 1 passes and three Grade 3s. He was also declared the Most Disciplined And Exemplary Student and won the Stoute-Mapp Shield For Leadership and the Canadian Alumni Scholarship, among a host of other prizes. Other top students were Shanice Connell, who received six Grade 2 passes and two Grade 3s. She was awarded the Gwendolyn Griffth–Robinson Shield For Helpfulness and the Mona Haynes Memorial Prize For Honest Endeavour.
Katelyn Bryan was awarded for her outstanding achievements by making the Principal’s Honour Roll.