5 SEPTEMBER – [GIS] — Today marks history for Grade 12 students in the Virgin Islands, who are the first cohort since the implementation of the additional school year by the Ministry of Education and Culture.
Grade 12 students of Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) and Bregado Flax Educational Centre (BFEC) Secondary Division are being accommodated at the H.L. Stoutt Community College (HLSCC) campuses on both Tortola and Virgin Gorda. ESHS has 167 students enrolled, and BFEC Secondary has 42 students.
At the ESHS general assembly this morning, Principal Mrs. Sandy Underhill told the 1,593 student body: “Last school year began with many challenges, all of which were aimed at improving the operations of this school. There was significant positive change to the climate and ethos of the institution.”
One significant change, Principal Underhill noted, is the 21-percent student increase, as a result of the implementation of the additional school year. This means that for the first time, the Elmore Stoutt High School has grades seven through twelve.
Mrs. Underhill told Grade 12 students, “You will either be dually enrolled, taking both ESHS and HLSCC courses, or taking ESHS course only…We are very excited about this relationship between ESHS and HLSCC and believe that this bond will serve as a catalyst for strengthening relations between the college and all secondary schools in the Territory.”
She also explained various ongoing initiatives, stating, “We will work to improve safety and security as we are working closely with the Department of Disaster Management to improve standards and implement emergency protocols and practices in the school.”
Mrs. Underhill added, “Regarding discipline, we continue to improve existing systems that aimed at providing intervention strategies that modify behaviour rather than focusing on punishment. We will identify students with various needs and implement strategies and initiatives that will promote their success.”
Principal Underhill also told the student body that ESHS will continue to build its public relations, improve community outreach, and enhance fundraising efforts including the Cheerleading Competition, ESHS Senior School Pageant, and Alumni Outreach.
Students are also expected to learn the Virgin Islands Territorial Pledge.
The Ministry of Education and Culture is committed to creating a “Culture of Excellence”.