SLB adopts Port Royal Primary and Infant
The children of the Port Royal Primary and Infant School were fêted on Friday by the Students’ Loan Bureau (SLB) as the state entity formally adopted the Kingston-based educational institution ahead of the new academic year.
The day’s events were organised by the Student Loan Bureau (SLB) against the backdrop of formally adopting the institution under the SLB adopt-a-school programme.
The SLB Gives Back charitable outreach initiative, which was launched in 2021 as the SLB celebrated its 50th anniversary, staged the back-to-school event, which saw the children enjoying a bouncy house and other activities for entertainment. School supplies were also donated and cooked meals were provided.
Nickeisha Walsh, executive director of the SLB, said the move was in line with the bureau’s corporate and social responsibility initiatives slated for the 2022-2023 fiscal year.
Port Royal Primary and Infant is the first school to benefit from the SLB’s adopt-a-school programme and Walsh said the team was excited to give back to the nation’s youth in a tangible way.
The SLB team also handed over a deep freezer, a refrigerator and an industrial stove to the school.
“We have been sensitised about the needs of the institution and we want to help this school achieve their goals while working towards making the students’ learning experience a more comfortable and fruitful one,” Walsh said.
Principal Nicola Jones told The Gleaner that the school was in desperate need of these appliances as its 45-year-old stove could no longer cook meals for the 85 students on roll, a number she expects to continue growing.
“We have been using it from then. We have repaired it numerous times and so it was really the time for it to go,” she told The Gleaner, adding that she is hoping that the relationship with the SLB will also lead to an improvement in academic performance.
The SLB will also be assisting the school with infrastructural development and ideas will be exchanged on how to further the school’s aim of being more inclusive.
Walsh said that the SLB has committed to working with the Port Royal Primary and Infant School to support programmes aimed at improving the education, health and wellness of the students under a five-year plan.
“The goal is not a touch-go affair, but a long-term relationship with the school extending to the teachers, students and parents. It is about making an indelible mark in the lives of our future generation, and giving valuable, long-lasting rewards to the students and school,” she said.
One of the long-term outputs of the programme is to adopt a high-performing student at the primary level through to tertiary studies.