Sat | Dec 3, 2016

Javia Reid on excellence highway

Published:Friday | August 22, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Thirteen-year-old Javia Reid (centre) with mother Tamara Levy-Reid and mentor Basil Stewart. - Photo by Gareth Davis

Gareth Davis, Gleaner Writer

Not even the economic hardships which continue to plague her family could derail determined 13-year-old student Javia Reid, who is on a quest for a higher education, which she recognises as the gateway out of poverty.

Reid, who hails from one of the most depressed communities in western Portland - Spring Hill - is described by her mother, Tamar Levy-Reid, as a very humble, hardworking, and intelligent child. One who is committed to doing her schoolwork.

"She has always shown signs of brilliance," her mother said. "Even during her pre-school era, she was always fond of letters and numbers. And it comes as no surprise that she is one of the top achievers in the 2014 Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT). We have had many financial challenges, but despite that, she is determined that her goal will be achieved."

Levy-Reid added: "She is a committed student who completes all her assignments, and I am positive that she will excel at the highest level."

No stranger to challenges

According to Levy-Reid, her daughter is no stranger to challenges, as she grew up facing them on a daily basis; but it is her determination, amid the challenges, which has allowed her to succeed thus far.

The 13-year-old attended Bradford Preparatory in Buff Bay, Portland, but, at grade 3, the family started experiencing financial challenges and was unable to pay school fees on time.

Despite that, Reid's mother was encouraged by the school's late principal, Leila Jumpp, to allow the child to remain as she was considered an outstanding student.

"I was told by the late principal to make the payments in instalments, and that it would be unwise to remove the child from Bradford Preparatory, as it could disrupt her progress," Reid said. "Today, I am happy that she was given a second chance by the late principal."

But although Javia remained at Bradford Preparatory, the financial challenges continued to mount as her mother, who was the breadwinner had a mortgage to pay on the house which had to come from the meagre salary she was earning at the local health centre.

"My mother is such an inspiration," said Reid.

She added: "She encourages me a lot and assists me greatly. She is an all-round mother, teacher, and friend. I was well prepared for my GSAT and the grades are testimony to that. I will be attending St Mary High School in September, and I will be working even harder. I am now at the foot of the ladder and, with God's help, I will make it to the top."

Reid's success, thus far, is also influenced by mentorship received from art teacher Basil Stewart, who has assisted greatly with her development.

Stewart, who now prepares and conditions the School's Challenge Quiz team at Bradford Preparatory, said Reid is destined for a bright future academically.

Reid attained an average of 94.60 per cent in the recently concluded GSAT and her individual scores were mathematics, 97 per cent; science, 95 per cent; social studies, 95 per cent; language arts, 94 per cent and communication task, 92 per cent.