Tue | Feb 18, 2020

Maxfield Park Primary to improve lives of students with Centre of Excellence

Published:Friday | October 26, 2018 | 12:00 AMJodi-Ann Gilpin/Gleaner Writer
Dr Peter Phillips (centre), Member of Parliament for East Central St Andrew and leader of the opposition; principal Beverley Gallimore Vernon (left), and Andrew Francis (right) of SEO chat with students at the opening of the Centre of Excellence at the Maxfield Park Primary School in St Andrew on Wednesday.

Improvement in learning deficiencies in addition to refining the skills of students who are talented musicians and singers are some of the results that are expected with the opening of the centre of excellence at the Maxfield Park Primary School in St Andrew on Wednesday.

Beverley Gallimore Vernon, principal of the school, noted that the centre would go a far way in creating holistic individuals and building student confidence.

"When I came to the school, I recognised that many of our children were not the ones who were sought after in other schools because they did not have the requisite skills," she said.

"What I recognised with them is that they were very talented. They had the ability to dance, to sing, and I said to myself, 'If we should put a programme where all their needs are met, not only math and science, but in other areas, then I think in terms of behaviour, we would have seen improvement and in terms of our academic attainment, we would have seen improvement."

As such, she expressed gratitude to all the relevant stakeholders who made the establishment of the facility possible, pointing out that it was a welcome programme.

Dr Peter Phillips, member of Parliament for East Central St Andrew and leader of the opposition, expressed similar sentiments, noting that every effort must be made to give all children a first-rate education, which should include extra-curricular activities.

"The inclusion of music in the curriculum and the extension of space for the dramatic arts and dance are absolutely critical in terms of creating a rounded human being. Life involves reading, mathematics, sciences, and so on, but the human being is also someone who likes to listen to music, who expresses themselves through music. Music, drama, and poetry are something that move people," he said.

"All of these things are aspects of life that are so important. And for a country that has made its mark on the world primarily through music, we need to give the children who are naturally gifted in this regard an opportunity to refine their skills."