It is a first for Barbados.
Outstanding track and field athletes of school age will soon be having access to at least four government scholarships to pursue their disciplines domestically, within the region or in metropolitan countries.
Minister of Education, Ronald Jones, made this announcement today while delivering the feature address at the Speech Day and Prize-Giving Ceremony at The Lodge School, Massiah Street, St John.
Lauding the performance of the athletes who represented the twenty-one government schools in the recently concluded meeting, Jones said that they should be recognised for their prowess on the track and field as other students are recognised for their academic achievements.
Presenting an argument for the awarding of government scholarships to students who excel in track and field and other sporting disciplines, Jones said: “ Let it not be said that only those who exhibit great scholastic attitude, but also those who have been able to use psychomotor skills to represent this country will not be forgotten.”
The Christ Church East Central MP told his audience that in another three to four weeks he will be taking to Cabinet a paper to establish four scholarships to recognise outstanding performances in track and field.
Jones, who once held the position of President of the Barbados Football Association for an extended period said he would have liked to propose a greater number of scholarships to his fellow Cabinet members.
“I have to take into consideration that the country is just emerging out of the greatest economic recession this world has ever known so I am going to take it in small bites. However, rest assured that it is not going to rest at four, but it is going to go even higher. So those young people who now despair that they have performed well in track and field and other sports and are now unable pursue their discipline through lack of scholarships, this will be a thing of the past,” Jones said.