Wills Primary in Maxwell, Christ Church has impressed Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Senator Harry Husbands, who toured the private school this morning.
“I am highly impressed with the organisation of the school though it appears to be small, it turns out to be quite spacious,” Husbands said. “The students are all involved and the teaching staff is well trained, based on all the information…
“Whether the top student is from a private school or a Government school for us [in the ministry], that is not the important issue. The important issue for us it is how the students are performing overall.”
He added that what was being emphasised was the “diversity and variety” available to parents in Barbados outside of the government schools.
“There are some very well organised and capable schools in the private sector and it enhances the educational offerings in Barbados and allows for the diversity which should be promoted,” Husbands stated.
The parliamentary secretary interacted with the students of the school — from those in Nursery to Class 4. He laughed with and quizzed some of them, who were in obvious work mode but who paused to greet him and chat.
Husbands said that from the tour he was satisfied with the extra-curricular offerings of the school, especially recognising that the Dover Playing Field was nearby, with the principal confirming that the students had ready access to it at any time. He said Wills Primary and the others he visited all offered a variety of activities outside of the academic curriculum in terms of sports, physical activity and culture.
Principal of the school, Nicole Wills, said that the school, which is 15 years old, has grown from just three students to the current 230.
“Our kids are very happy, well adjusted and every year they succeed and they get to the schools of their choices… We have three going to Harrison College, nine going to Queen’s College, five going to The St. Michael School and the others are going to very good schools,” Wills said.
Co-principal, Julia Franklin, explained that while there were a number of non-nationals on the roll, the majority of the students Barbadian.
“We are not here to compete, to say that the private schools are better than the Government schools,” Franklin said. “We are all here to work together and to enhance the education of Barbados.”
Furthermore, she added, both Wills Primary and other government school had good relationships with the ministry and the private school network with many of the Government primary schools.