The summer vacation has only just begun and already a group of primary school students are back in the classroom.
For the next four weeks, the students, who were granted deferrals for this year’s Barbados Secondary Schools Entrance Examination, will be taking part in the Summer School Primary 2016, which began on Tuesday at Hindsbury Primary School.
Under the Flexible Transfer Policy system implemented in 1996, the Ministry of Education is giving the students another opportunity to enhance their knowledge in Mathematics and Language Arts. The programme also aims to develop other life skills and exposes them to extra-curricular activities, such as martial arts, arts and craft, sign language, jewellery making, music and dance.
“It was established for students who need a bit more time consolidating the learning opportunities which were provided over the previous six years, so that they will have an opportunity during this 2016 summer school to further enhance their capacities,” said Deputy Chief Education Officer Dr Roderick Rudder, who delivered the opening remarks during the launch at Solidarity House.
However, Rudder warned that the success of any student was based on discipline.
“You have to foster it [discipline] in a stable environment in which each child can focus on very clear objectives and make every effort, shutting out all of the distractions to ensure success at the end of the day,” Rudder said.
He urged the parents to develop true discipline and create environments where their children could maximize on all opportunities.
“It is a partnership, parents, teachers, family and friends,” Rudder said.
Speaking from his experience as a teacher, he lamented that some parents hardly assisted their children with homework, but when Common Entrance time came around, “they’re there”.
He also complimented the parents who took the time to attend Tuesday’s launch, saying, “I hope that this is an indication that the parents present are willing to make a commitment to be there for their child, not just for this summer school, but throughout the rest of their child’s education journey”.
“Everyone gets excited about Common Entrance and then CXC and CAPE performances, but somewhere between nursery and preparation for Common Entrance we don’t get all excited.
“After that excitement dissipates another four or five, sometimes six or seven, years may pass until another set of excitement comes about. The intervening years must mean something to all of us,” he urged.
Rudder reminded the parents that summer school was not a magic wand.
“There is no glitter pathway to next year’s Common Entrance. It is about discipline, hard work and partnership,” he stressed.