Camp Transition on Again at St. Michael School

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Camp Transition 2013 will be held at The St. Michael School from August 12-16 and again from August 19-23.??

The Camp caters to five categories of children who will be making the transition to various levels of their school life. These comprise students who are entering secondary school for the first time; those who are already in secondary school but who are underperforming and may have to repeat a year; those who are being transferred from one secondary school to another; those who are starting the CSEC programme in fourth form or CAPE in the sixth form, and finally those who are leaving school without any plans.??

A key aim of Camp Transition 2013 is to help children develop skills to master the transitional points throughout secondary school and place them on a path to success.??

Coordinator and Guidance Counsellor at The St. Michael School, Margaret Grant, in giving the rationale for the camp, stressed that the programme would help students develop coping and other skills for success throughout their lives.

She reflected: ???If only we can imagine the emotional trauma which many children experience as they separate from loved ones and close friendships which were built for the last five to seven years, as they leave a very familiar environment and step into a totally new one and leave small, close-knit private, sometimes single sex schools to enter large public co-educational schools???

???They move away from focusing on two major subjects to over 10 subjects with foreign languages included and say goodbye to schools where numbers were under 500 and have now to embrace a new school where the roll is between 900 and 1,200 other students. Added to all this, they have to cope with the physical, emotional and social changes which are occurring because of puberty????????

She maintained that more was involved than changing a uniform, or a primary school; and the more children were prepared for secondary school, the more likely they would surmount the related challenges. Ms. Grant added: ???One must realise that survival skills are necessary to cope with the physical, social and emotional demands of life at a new secondary school.???

Within Camp Transition, there will also be a parents??? seminar which Mrs. Grant noted was important to building a healthy home-school partnership.

She said: ???Since nothing can be left to chance and since we want to reduce the number of children who fall through the cracks because they take long to settle and embrace the changes, parents should ensure that they secure a place for their charges at Camp Transition 2013 and also attend the seminar.???

The Guidance Counsellor noted too, that parents of children, who are already in secondary school but who have not performed well or may have to repeat a year must realise that it is not the end of the world for them. She said giving them the opportunity to attend Camp Transition would give them an advantage over other students, while those starting CSEC would be given an introduction to the CXC programme, its structure and its requirements along with the skills needed by each child to secure success in individual subjects.??

Seminars for students pursuing sixth form CAPE studies will also be organised during the final week of the camp.??

Mrs. Grant and Shaunt??e Walters are authors of the book, ???Entering Secondary School: A Survival Kit For Students With Helpful Tips For Parents,??? which each camper will receive.??

The deadline for registration is Friday, August 2, and parents may reserve a space for their children by calling Mrs. Grant at 424-6391 or Ms. Walters at 238-9264 or by emailing them at smootheasytransitions@gmail.com.

joy-ann.gill@barbados.gov.bb

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