Forum Soon For Private Schools

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Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Senator Harry Husbands going over some school work with one of the students of Windsor School during his tour today. (C. Pitt/BGIS)

Principals of private schools are likely to have a forum with the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, following the scheduled tours of these institutions by Parliamentary Secretary, Senator Harry Husbands.

This was pointed out today as Senator Husbands visited yet another private school – Windsor High School located at Quarry Road, Bank Hall.

"We first need to bring the principals together and have a meeting to discuss some of the issues," the Parliamentary Secretary said, in response to a question on his next plan of action.

Senator Husbands observed that it was clear to him that even at this stage what was needed at the Ministry was "a desk or some system dedicated solely to private education".??

"I think there is need for greater and closer liaising not only in?? terms of management, standards and so on but just general administrative purposes and to know what is going on, on a much?? more regular and intimate basis, in the private school system", he said.

Reiterating the need for Barbados to be in a position to leverage the high regard in which the country’s educational system was held and to promote private education of all types, he disclosed that he had been "pleasantly surprised" at what he had seen at Windsor High – the extent of the school’s current programme and what it had planned for the immediate future.

Noting that he had never visited the school before, he said: "Based on what I have seen this morning I am extremely impressed by the range of programmes that they currently offer… and I am sure [these] will enhance the scope of private secondary education in Barbados and go a long way to ensure the continued existence of this school."

A former teacher, himself, Senator Husbands reminded the media that?? many of the private schools tended to educate children who were "on?? bursary", many of whom would have scored very low in the?? Common Entrance Examination, as well as those who had been expelled from Government secondary schools.

Stressing that these factors had to be borne in mind, he said: "There are indications in some sections of the private secondary system that student performance in some areas is very good and improving… What we are seeing this morning and in the plan that Mr. Prescod [Principal of Windsor] has outlined [is] that there is probably a better future for our private education in Barbados."

Windsor High School was founded in September 1961, by Courtney Prescod. Now headed by his son, Rodney Prescod, the school has a roll of 150 students in its primary and secondary system.

Asked about what he attributed to the longevity of the school, the principal said: "self-determination – we believe in helping ourselves, we have worked tirelessly to keep changing with the times."??

Alluding to his father’s legacy, Mr. Prescod noted that the school remained grounded on the principle of "a sound education" for all students.?? And, he said: "What we have done from then untill now is use that for the basis of moving forward… We have been working on that and will continue to work on that concept."

joy-ann.gill@barbados.gov.bb

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