Celebrating 21 years

Former deputy Principal Zedma Simmons; in the background, the first Principal, John Blackman.

No longer a “baby”, the Deighton Griffith School has come of age.

The school celebrated its 21st anniversary today with a service held at the Christ Church Parish Church in Church Hill.

The school was opened on September 17, 1991, with a role of 610 students and 32 staff members. Now the Kingsland, Christ Church school can boast of a roll of 855 students and 55 teachers.

This year, the school ranked second among the transfer requests after The St. Michael School, with a total of 87 requests made.

Principal of the school, Cheryll Moseley, said the success of the school in a mere 21 years was as a result of being blessed with a firm foundation provided by the school’s first principal, John Blackman and his staff. With the motto, Discipline Guarantees Success, ever present the school had been supported and developed by a succession of strong dedicated leaders thus being able to succeed and in the areas of academic, sport, cultural activities, entertainment and discipline.

Minister of Education, Ronald Jones, was present to applaud the school’s accomplishments however he implored the students to continue the good work which was done by past students and staff who had all helped to uplift the school. While adding that the school was constructed during a difficult period, when Barbados was going through stabilization and structural adjustments he encouraged them not to waste their opportunities.

“You have the opportunity not provided before January 1962, when many persons had to find the $5 to send their children to school- it was very difficult because Barbados was essentially still a plantation economy. Education has changed that, giving you an opportunity to be whatever you want to be right across the spectrum, don’t waste it- it is too valuable a commodity to be wasted,” he said.

“I see children walking to school as leisurely as though they don’t care, I see children taking buses and getting off at one stop and taking the bus again and leisurely getting to school at 9:30 a.m., 10:15 a.m. without a worry in the world. Three lessons would have gone, three subjects would have already been concluded. It is said that when you give people things too easily that they don’t care about it, here at Deighton Griffith I hope that is not a part of your mantra.

“So to you young students, to you children you have a responsibility to buckle down and to learn. It is not that ‘my teacher must cost me to learn’, it is you who have to learn from that which the teacher provides. The teacher can only provide within a context, you have to ensure that whatever is provided for you, you not only take the major share but that you take all that is provided and then add to that within your domestic environment and within whatever environment is provided for you. We have too many complaints of teachers going on their knees and begging students in fourth and fifth forms to do their SBA’s. In other words, that should not be happening you should be ensuring that your SBA’s in fact completed with the support of teachers.

“Even though parents continue to contribute to their children through uniforms and petty fees and lunch money, if we had to say to parents, from nursery straight through to tertiary ‘okay you will carry the full costs’ there are still tens of thousands of Barbadians who will never be able to find the monies to send their children to school. The state and the citizens took the decision that out of the collective pool of resources provided by tax payers of Barbados that we will say to the people of Barbados ‘education is essentially free, go and benefit from that which is provided'”, he said.

The anniversary celebrations were topped by musical performances, Bible reading and prayers for continued blessings for the school. (KC)

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