Flaneil's steady rise to the top
NEW FOREST, Manchester:
Well-spoken, humble and bursting with potential are just a few words to describe young Flaneil Plummer, though they may do her no justice.
One could not simply have a sit-down with her and not beam with pride at the brilliance evidenced in speech and accomplishments.
"I don't really consider myself brilliant, but I just have the knowledge," Plummer told Rural Xpress.
Knowledgeable enough to secure her a spot as top girl for the 2016 Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) in the island.
Being at the top is nothing new for Plummer as she has enjoyed being placed first in all her classes from Junction Early Childhood to New Forest Infant, Primary and High School, where she sat her GSAT.
"She has always been excelling, and teachers used to tell us we should save for her because she is going to do well," her father Oneil said.
Naturally gifted to remember information heard and seen, Plummer told Rural Xpress that it was not always easy and she had to put in the work and make sacrifices.
"Sometimes I know everything, but I still have to study because if you don't study, you won't remember much. I knew that I had to work hard to get where I wanted to be in the future, but it took a lot of encouragement from my family, teachers and my principal," Plummer said.
She added: "I had to cut TV time short. I used to watch TV a lot, like about three and a half hours a day, but then it had to be cut to one and a half hours or less ... . I love to watch TV, but you have to make the right sacrifices to get where you want to be," she said.
Early morning and late nights studying with her mother, special tutoring sessions and school marathons became the order of her days leading up to her big exam, but she never wavered.
"We thought it would have been more difficult for her, with the schedules and the fact that she had baby twin sisters. She had to fight a lot of distractions. I don't know how she kept that focus. And no matter how we try as parents, we had to depend on her sometimes. I really wasn't expecting this based on all that was going on, but she did exceptionally well and my dream is for her to continue doing well. She is a disciplined, obedient, hard-working girl," Plummer's father said.
Plummer also had to schedule time for witnessing as a Jehovah's Witness, but that did not stop her from hitting the high scores.
"My overall average was 99.8 per cent. I got 100 per cent for language, communication task, social studies and science, and 99 per cent for mathematics," Plummer shared.
She was overjoyed when she found out that she would be attending her first choice, Hampton High for Girls, but, according to her, she could not have been prepared for the announcement that she was the top girl in the island.
"I wanted to cry, but tears froze. I was so shocked, I didn't even have the guts to move. I found out through The Gleaner that I was the top girl when they released the names. Everyone was overjoyed," said the achiever.
Plummer, who aspires to become a teacher or a paediatrician, made history as the first student from the New Forest Infant, Primary and High School to secure the top all-island GSAT achiever placement, and is looking forward to greater things at Hampton School.