As the Gordon Greenidge Primary School celebrates its silver jubilee, students were today encouraged to strive for nothing less than excellence in their academic and extra curricular pursuits.
During a service of thanksgiving at the Mount Zion Church marking the institution’s 25 years of existence and the success of its students, educator Anderson Scantlebury, who delivered the featured address, stressed the importance of giving of one’s best, while making reference to the biblical character Joseph.
“Your attitude determines your altitude. I want you to find your dream. There must be a dream that you have; something that you want to aspire to and then you must adopt the right attitude and be careful who you share your dream with.
“You must have an attitude of excellence no matter what you go through in your life. You only lose when you give up [and] I don’t want any of you to give up,” he said, while suggesting that an attitude of excellence guarantees success.
“There will be difficulties along the way, . . . [but] excellence must become a way of life. You can’t be excellent today and not excellent tomorrow. Whatever you do, make sure that excellence becomes your hallmark.”
He further implored the students to reach for the stars and not to settle for less than the best.
“I am tired of hearing too many kids say, ‘I pass’. Fifty per cent is not a pass mark! Fifty per cent means you don’t know half of what you are supposed to know,” he complained, while urging the students to aim instead for 100 per cent.
“I am looking forward to the day when our children sit the 11-plus exam and they have so many students who got 100 per cent that they don’t know where to send them,” Scantlebury said as he openly challenged parents to “push excellence into your children from in the womb”.
“Don’t wait until they are born. Talk to them about excellence [in the womb]. They will hear you,” he said, while lamenting that “so many of our kids are satisfied with just surviving and getting by”.
“Let your children know that 100 per cent is their goal and not 75 or 50,” the educator stressed.
Principal Angela Smith, in delivering her remarks, said the school’s focus was on building well-rounded students.
“Our focus is not solely on the academic development of our pupils, but on their holistic development, which includes the understanding and application of concepts, the mastery of skills and preparation for life.”
She also highlighted the school’s achievements over the past quarter century, boasting that “over the course of the past 25 years our school has been the alma mater of at least three Barbados scholars and two exhibitionists” and also produced in 2003, “the most outstanding male in the Barbados Secondary Schools Entrance exam.
“Undoubtedly as we leave the first 25 years behind and proceed on the journey to the future we will face more challenges and more opportunities but for sure there will be many more achievements,” she said. (AGB)