Security issues at St Leonard’s


Security at the St Leonard’s Boys’ Secondary School continues to be a major headache for the administration of that City school.

Principal of St Leonard’s Boys’ Secondary School, Joseph King, voiced this concern today while delivering his report at the school’s speech day and prize-giving ceremony at the school’s auditorium.

Addressing the problems of security at the school, King said: “Security personnel at the school remain challenged. There are still many break-ins and pieces of furniture are now going missing. Some persons are using inside the form rooms as toilets on weekends. The school continues to be a gambling ground for youths in the area. When approached, these youngsters stone the guards, curse, urinate on the doors and walls of the form rooms. They will leave when the police arrive, and reassemble as soon as [the police] leave the premises.

“As soon as the officers leave they will resume their gambling activities. The security of the premises can be enhanced with the replacement of broken fences.”

Addressing another challenge that confronts the administration of the school, the principal disclosed that the school hadcontinued its Students At Risk Programme under a select committee.

He disclosed that the programme had identified 90 students whose behaviour put them at risk of being expelled.

Giving details of the programme, King said: “The programme includes direct and regular parental input and signed behavioural contracts by students. It also includes continued monitoring and direct counselling. It has proven to be very effective with participants reintegrated into school’s general programme.

The principal also saw overcrowding as a challenge which had arisen since many parents were now seeing St Leonard’s as a school of choice.

Expanding on this development, King said: “We are finding it challenging to find places for additional applicants. We recognize that even though the school has been making significant strides and acceptance there is still work to be done. We are not resting on its laurels. A school with a roll of 1,047 can present challenges. I believe that this needs to be addressed urgently. There is still need for an additional secondary school. This will help reduce the large annual intake now being experienced by all schools.”

Looking at the more positive aspects of the school, the principal noted that the school’s culinary art team had created history when it won the Junior Culinary Competition for the third.

The principal also told his audience that students were now passing as many of four, five, six and eight CXC certificates at one sitting. They are also excelling in sports and music. (NC)

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