Fri | Dec 1, 2023

B B Coke incident exposes failures

Published:Monday | October 2, 2023 | 12:07 AM


My heart and prayers go to the 14-year-old who was severely beaten by another student at B B Coke High School.

This tragic and unnecessary incident lays bare systemic failures in both the education and healthcare systems. It also exposes the value that so many Jamaicans ascribe to material possessions.

There are a couple questions that demand our thoughtful exploration. Where were the adults when boys were lifting and taking their injured classmate to the hospital?

Are schools equipped to handle medical emergencies, and why wasn’t the injured boy promptly rushed to a hospital or medical facility for immediate attention? Why wasn’t the hospital able to do a MRI or CT scan?

Is the school community and the child’s mother receiving trauma-informed mental health care and support? Are mental-health and counselling systems in place to help the teen in custody?

Is access to quality education and healthcare only available to, and for the well-to-do and those who can afford to pay?

It is my hope and sincerest prayer that this tragedy serves as a catalyst for compassion and healing to all involved, especially, the 14-year-old boy.