Orientation under way for 370 new Central High students
Principal of Central High in May Pen, Clarendon, Vinroy Harrison, says back-to-school preparations are well under way as the institution seeks to accommodate the approximately 370 new students expected to be enrolled for the upcoming academic year.
On Monday when The Gleaner visited the school, the orientation exercise was in high gear as parents and students gathered to purchase identification cards and ties, and collect rental books and other material that will be needed come September.
"The grade seven students and their parents are out in their numbers as a part of preparing the students to make the transition from primary to the secondary level of their education," noted Harrison.
Today is also the beginning of the sensitisation process for the parents on what is expected of their students.
"We have done the necessary repair work, which includes preparing the classrooms and mending desks and chairs, so that each child will have a desk and chair to work on, and so we are on top of things," said the principal.
He noted that, initially, the school requested 280 grade seven students but received 310 instead. That, he said, was as a result of zoning procedures whereby some students placed in schools far from home have been accepted, and that further increased the number of newcomers to 370.
"That has caused us to find and prepare additional space, but as a school, we try to accommodate as many students as possible," he remarked.
The current population of 1,870 students, plus more than 200 sixth-formers and the newcomers will push the school's population to approximately 2,400 for the new school term.
There has been some misunderstanding relating to the payment of school fees versus contributions, but the principal was adamant that "at Central High School, no student will be deprived of his or her education based on their parents' inability to pay. The parents have been coming in, and after dialogue they have understood clearly what needs to take place. Our doors will remain wide open for those who can pay and for those who cannot afford to pay," he emphasised.
"I am expecting that we will run school and the parents will cooperate with the school. They have also given their commitment to work assiduously with their children to achieve our stated goals."