BHS still not ready, shift system to continue at Washie

Late last year when the BHS students were, for a second time, moved to the Washington Archibald High for the shift system it was pointed out that that was only a short term measure until school resumed on 5th January, 2015. During the interim period, government had announced that work would be undertaken at the BHS campuses to resolve matters.

Many doubted that this deadline would be met and some even tried to get the Minister of Education Nigel Carty to give a firm commitment, but he side stepped the issue, deflecting the question and his answer. Now, the fear has been realized and BHS is not ready.

On Wednesday, 31st December, 2014, the Ministry of Education revealed that a Health and Safety Task Force, chaired by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, had been created.

The Ministry also said it supports the decision to work collaboratively with PAHO/WHO as it relates to addressing any outstanding issues at the Basseterre High School.  “PAHO/WHO is the premier regional public health agency for the Americas and we welcome their independent recommendation of a testing agency to further assess the site in early January and to provide their full report subsequently,” the Ministry in a release to the media.

In light of this, the established shift system between the Washington Archibald High School and Basseterre High School will continue into the new term.  We recognize that this arrangement has its short comings but encourage all stakeholders to exhibit maximum patience and to remain committed to ensuring that our students’ and teachers interests are given top priority at all times. 

The Principals and Deputy Principals of both the Washington Archibald High School and Basseterre High School have collaborated to address past issues and will continue to work with the Ministry to resolve any concerns in the future. 

In the release, it was stated that the Ministry of Education’s main aim is have all the students of both schools in school all day.  “Therefore, we pledge to work assiduously with the Health and Safety Task Force and PAHO/WHO to ensure that all recommendations are implemented and that there is a swift return to normalcy at the BHS,” continued the release. 

The Ministry of Education says it remains committed to working with all stakeholders including the community at large to ensure that the children and teachers have the assurance of a safe and healthy teaching and learning environment. 

“The health and well-being of our citizens and the holistic development of our Nation’s children will always be among our main priorities,” stated the government release.


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