Public-health inspection raises serious concerns at neglected high school
Tyrone Reid, Senior Staff Reporter
A recent health inspection conducted by the Kingston and St Andrew Public Health Department has reportedly uncovered a serious health hazard at Tarrant High School.
The Sunday Gleaner understands that the health hazard is likely to impact the use of a section of a building on the school compound.
Our news team also understands that the school and the ministry are to be informed of the findings early this week.
When contacted last Friday, Esther Tyson, interim principal of Tarrant High School, would confirm only that the health inspectors visited the school the previous Friday.
"I have not received a report," was all Tyson would offer on the matter.
During a visit to the institution last month, our news team noticed what appeared to be mould in the ceiling of the grade-11 block that has been leaking for some time.
Mould, a growth of minute fungi usually associated with decay or dampness, can be toxic.
It is yet to be confirmed if the health hazard uncovered is directly linked to the leaky roof.
Last month, The Sunday Gleaner reported that a furniture audit conducted at Tarrant revealed that the school needed hundreds of desks and chairs.
As a result, teachers at the Corporate Area-based high school were often forced to stand and deliver the syllabus, while students had to find ingenious ways of securing a desk and a chair. The education ministry later claimed that the size of the furniture dearth was overstated.
Since then, the school has received help from the ministry and other institutions.
A tour of the school during a visit by this newspaper last month confirmed that the institution was in bad shape and needed urgent attention.
The ministry pledged to expedite the contractual arrangements to effect repairs to the roof and other infrastructural needs of the school.