The economic conditions in the country have prompted a Government minister to launch an Academic Support Programme at two schools in his constituency.
Minister of Environment Dr Denis Lowe yesterday announced that he is pumping $40,000 a year into the initiative for students sitting the 11-Plus exams at the St Bartholomew and St Christopher Primary Schools effective next year.
“I took the decision to offer academic support services for every student scheduled to take the 2015 and the 2016 Common Entrance Exams,” the minister disclosed during the launch of the programme at the Almond Bay Restaurant in Hastings, Christ Church.
“Teachers have been selected to [teach] . . . students from their respective schools. These services are at no cost to the parents. They are at no cost to the school. Further, the teachers involved will receive a monthly stipend, not a pay, but just something to say thanks; thanks for the time and the patience and the late evenings . . .”
Under the initiative, one hour classes would be offered twice per week. Supplies would be provided for both students and tutors.
The minister was adamant that he would “spend everything he has” to ensure the programme works.
“It is all about finding solutions to the challenges faced by many. It is about lending the hands of hope to those who just need to be helped along the way. Every child deserves to have an equal opportunity to succeed,” Dr Lowe added.