Mon | Feb 24, 2020

He was everything... Grief as Vauxhall High mourns murdered teacher

Published:Monday | January 27, 2020 | 11:53 AM
Students at the Vauxhall High School comfort each other at devotions this morning - Rudolph Brown photo

The grief was palpable at the Vauxhall High School in Kingston this morning as staff and students wept openly following the weekend murder of a teacher at the institution.

Carl Samuels, 36, was closing the gate of the school after working on students' report cards on Saturday evening when he was attacked.

The teacher, who was a licensed firearm holder, managed to kill one of his attackers, an 18-year-old boy.

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Principal Prudence Brown Pinnock was in tears as she expressed the deep sense of loss.

"He is the head of the performing arts department; he is also the grade 11 supervisor. He is head of the transfer committee. He is head of the graduation committee. He is head of the prize giving committee. He is head of everything,” she said.

Samuels has been at Vauxhall for more than 15 years.

Brown Pinnock said a counselling team now at the school will work with the students for all of today and tomorrow.

"We will start some measure of returning to normalcy as soon as possible,” she told The Gleaner minutes after devotions this morning.

According to Brown Pinnock, the immediate focus is to provide as much support to Samuels' widow who is a vice-principal at the institution and to find a replacement teacher.

"There are Theatre Arts students who would be preparing for CSEC in earnest now and we will have to find a teacher to replace him almost immediately," the principal said. 

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