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‘Amazing’ reception for tech school talk

Practical learning: Bermuda Technical Institute closed in 1972

A debate on the merits of a technical education in combating social problems has been “amazingly“ well received.

A packed audience greeted the forum of Bermuda Technical Institute graduates speaking on the value of practical learning offered by the “Tech”.

“A lot of people came out for it; it was an amazing turnout,” said spokesman Rick Richardson.

“There is a real need to catch those that fall through the cracks in Bermuda. It’s directly related to antisocial behaviour.”

The school was geared for male students aged 12 to 17, offering hands-on training to hundreds.

This year marked the 60th anniversary of founding of the Technical Institute, which closed down in 1972.

Former MP Reginald Burrows joined other guests with a panel of Technical Institute alumni to discuss how its syllabus of science and practical technology provided guidance as well as jobs.

“The place was packed — it was standing room only,” said Mr Burrows of the gathering on Wednesday night at the Anglican Cathedral hall.

As a third generation plumber, Mr Burrows can attest to the value of acquiring a solid background as a tradesman.

“I’ve always been interested in getting our young boys into some kind of technical training,” he said. “We’ve got to do something to get our young men motivated and doing something positive. A lot of us feel that we need to get boys who are not academic but still intelligent and get them learning a trade.

“A lot of boys nowadays cannot find work, because they have limited educations and no skills.

“With the Technical Institute, they would be put in a trade, and by the time they got to the age of 17 or 18, they were ready to work in that trade.”