First Principal of St. Lucy Secondary School, Daryll Jordan greets Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones and Minister of Industry, Small Business and Rural Development, Denis Kellman outside the Ifill and Phillips Auditorium, following the renaming of the Trents St. Lucy institution to the Daryll Jordan Secondary School. (C. Pitt/BGIS)

St. Lucy Secondary School was today renamed the Daryll Jordan Secondary School, with Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Ronald Jones saying "a good name is more desirable than riches" and "to be esteemed is better than silver or gold".

He said the renaming of the school at Trents, St. Lucy was of particular significance because it represented an important area of Government’s mandate.

Minister Jones said: "The Government of Barbados has reiterated its commitment not to ignore the significant contributions of the stalwarts and icons of Barbados including those who have significantly impacted the educational landscape, or by extension through their works in the general Barbadian community.

"A country that acknowledges the work of its citizens by inscribing their names and deeds in the annals of history is a country that has matured. It has the consciousness to recognise the greatness and confer the proper respect to whom it is deserving… It is my Government’s policy to perpetuate the memory of its worthy sons and daughters whose deeds will be preserved for posterity."

Minister Jones further added that it was particularly remarkable and welcomed at this point because Mr. Jordan, the honouree was still alive.

In accepting the honour, Mr. Jordan admitted that it was "an awesome responsibility" that he had taken on in September 197I, when he became the first to head this co-educational school. He said he enjoyed it because "I was doing the best I could for my fellow man and trying to give him or her a hand".

Explaining further, Mr. Jordan continued: "This is the only school that never had a cut-off mark in the Common Entrance Examination. When people asked me what was my cut-off mark I told them, ???we don’t have any cut-off mark. Any mark between zero and 140 and I have a place in the school and you have a child I can help – come, I will give that child a place."

Declaring with certainty that it was the right path to take, Mr. Jordan said: "There are some remarkable examples of how children have made progress some of them that you would not have thought [of]."??????????

Mr. Jordan further expressed his views on the Common Entrance Examination Barbados Secondary Schools Entrance Examination noting that it brought with it problems, especially among the weaker students whose level of reading competency and literacy was inadequate.??

Commenting about his former school, he said: "The professional expertise of staff was under strain in helping weaker students to manage their academic load. But there are many instances, which tended to suggest that performance at Common Entrance is not necessarily a defining element of a child’s future especially with variances like positive attitudes and consistent effort.

"Despite such challenges many of our students find themselves at desirable levels of our labour force. But the challenge of inadequate reading competency and literacy needs to be corrected before the child begins the secondary stage."

Commending the Education Ministry for looking into the issue of reading literacy Mr. Jordan said: "It is obvious that reading is basic to every subject at the secondary level even Mathematics".

He explained: "When a child reaches the secondary stage if he or she is experiencing difficulties in these areas it makes their progress very hazardous. I believe the problem needs to be tackled at the level of the primary school; resources need to be put there.

"I believe that if the right things are done at the primary stage; [and] efforts are made to identify those children who are having difficulties with reading and identify the causes of their difficulties and have specialist help applied, we can reduce significantly the need for remedial reading at secondary school."

He said that the Daryll Jordan Secondary School had reached a stage where one of the first things that had to be done was to administer a reading test to determine which student needed remedial reading.??

"But, I don’t think that is the stage at which it should be done," Mr. Jordan stressed, as he lauded parents, teachers and staff and shared experiences on how they willingly accepted his guidance. The man who retired from the teaching profession in 1995 said, "Indeed they have enriched my latter years with a treasury of unforgettable moments."????

The renaming of the school at Trents St. Lucy also saw Minister Jones unveiling a plaque officially naming the auditorium after the late Esbon Ifill and Amory Philips.


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