Education Minister meets parents of students attending the Good Hope Secondary School
…Students will continue to be engaged virtually
…New contractor identified to complete school
The Honourable Minister of Education Priya Manickchand along with the Chief Education Officer, Dr. Marcel Hutson and Regional Education Officer (Region Four), Ms. Tiffany Harvey, met with the parents of students attending the Good Hope Secondary School during a virtual meeting.
The purpose of the meeting according to Minister Manickchand was to inform the parents about the status of the school and how their children will continue to be engaged.
Minister Manickchand said that she had hoped that the school could have been opened physically but unfortunately there have been several setbacks with the physical infrastructure being completed due to the previous contractor failing to deliver. After two or three extensions, the contract was terminated with the previous contractor by the Government.
Minister Manickchand told the parents today that the school is not physically ready to accommodate their children. However, she reported that the Government of Guyana and the World Bank has given no objection to having R. Bassoo and Sons Construction be awarded the contract to complete the school. This is the contracting firm that built the Westminster Secondary School in Region Three.
She said that the Good Hope Secondary School will be assessed to ascertain what needs to be done and when it can be completed to accommodate the children it is intended to benefit.
Presently, the school only has students at the Grade 8 level. Minister Manickchand noted that based on the advice from the Ministry of Health, Grade 8 students across Guyana should not return to school at this time. Therefore, even if the school was finished, their students will not be able to enter the building.
She said that today’s meeting was necessary since parents deserve to know what the Ministry will be doing to ensure their children remain engaged despite not having a completed school.
Meanwhile, Regional Education Officer, Ms. Tiffany Harvey noted that the school currently has an enrolment of 121 students, all in Grade 8 divided into 5 classes. She reported that 18 teachers are engaging the students virtually.
Ms. Harvey said that initially, the students were being taught topics in the four core subject areas of Mathematics, English, Science and Social Studies. However, she noted that the curriculum was expanded and students are now being taught Information Technology, Agriculture Science, Home Economics, Industrial Technology and Health and Family Life Education (HFLE).
Further, Ms. Harvey said that when these students can return to face to face engagement, the plan is to have them benefit from the practical experiences for those subjects which have that component and that this will be facilitated at the Annandale Secondary School.