There is no good school or bad school in Barbados, says Education Minister, Ronald Jones.
This emphatic statement was made last evening as the Minister addressed the 2017 graduating class of St. Bartholomew’s Primary School, at Sunbury Plantation in St. Philip.
Calling it “a dangerous syndrome” that had crept into the lexicon of Barbadians, Mr. Jones said: “I don’t believe in this harsh division that somehow if you go to ‘School A’ you are somehow better than someone who goes to ‘School B’ or ‘School C’. Schools are creations of man’s mind – they are what we call social constructs.”
According to him, the important thing was for there to be effective and quality learning given by excellent teachers, committed to transforming students. Arguing that if these could be achieved then there would be no need for the debate on good or bad schools, the Minister told the 20 graduates to simply try to be the best that they could be and reach heights they should reach.
Addressing the ceremony’s theme The Gold is within your Grasp, the Education Minister advised the graduands not to settle for mediocrity, but to use their brilliance and the assistance of parents, teachers, school and community to grasp it. He said how they advanced in life was dependent upon them not only holding onto it by passing it from generation to generation.
“And, that is why we encourage discipline in our children. We encourage our children to remain focused on the goal, on achievement, on success, on trying to be the best that we can be and that you can be and to take that vest unto yourself and change it into the gold that is within you,” said the former teacher.
Mr. Jones also warned them about succumbing to pressures and suggested that they looked to the good examples that brought out the gold within them.