Education Ministry awards top GSAT scholars
Jayden Clarke was bubbling with excitement as he watched the proceedings at a ceremony to award students who registered exemplary performances in the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) at the National Arena in Kingston yesterday.
The young, bright student of Kensington Primary journeyed with his principal, teachers, and fellow pupils from St Catherine to attend the ceremony to mark the end of the GSAT, which started in 1999.
Jayden, with the help of his teachers, had just put the finishing touches to the vote of thanks, which he gave on behalf of 1,000 students who were awarded for academic excellence. The Kensington top student was one of six youngsters who achieved perfect scores in the final GSAT.
But Jayden told The Gleaner that scoring straight hundreds in the five subjects was not an easy feat, noting that it meant that he had to make sacrifices. Jayden told our news team that he had to park his games and other devices and cut back on his outdoor activities.
"I am very excited. I am really happy. I made my teachers proud. I made my principal proud. I made by parents proud. I made myself proud," a confident Jayden said.
The 12-year-old GSAT achiever will begin his secondary education at Campion College in September.
Minister of Education Ruel Reid hailed the awardees, who comprised the final cohort of students to sit the GSAT, for their outstanding achievements. He encouraged parents to continue to play an active part in their children's education and urged the awardees to remain focused as they made the transition to high school.
"We big you up, the top 1,000 students from across Jamaica," declared Reid as he addressed the students, parents, and well-wishers who attended the ceremony.
In this year's GSAT, three boys and a similar number of girls received perfect scores.
Two attend Emmanuel Christian Academy, and the others are from St Hugh's Preparatory, Kensington Primary, Stella Maris Preparatory, and Meadowbrook Preparatory.