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Schools ready after summer renovations

Primary and preschools are ready for the 2016/17 school year to commence next week, according to the Ministry of Education and Public Works.

In a press conference held at Elliot Primary this morning, the minister of education Wayne Scott along with Craig Cannonier, Minister of Public Works, discussed projects that were completed over the summer in preparation for the first day of school on September 8.

Mr Scott said: “First of all, during the summer months our technical officers in both the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Public Works strategically worked together to undertake a series of maintenance and capital projects that will improve our school facilities in preparation for the start of school each year.

“We recognise the importance of having a safe, clean and healthy learning environment for our students, our principals, teaching staff and administrative staff.

“Just last week I visited some of our schools along with the acting Commissioner of Education and our facilities manager. We were pleased to see that the maintenance and repair work is progressing well. This summer, the facilities section and the Department of Education has completed a total of 75 school improvement deliverables with 25 of those being capital development projects for the improvement of our school buildings.

“Following a successful bidding process, work contracts were awarded to a number of local contractors to execute on the repair, maintenance and improvement projects slated for the summer.”

The Elliot Primary School was one of the major improvement projects with renovations of the upper restrooms, interior and exterior painting, tent fumigation of the entire school, flooring projects in the assembly hall and library as well as extensive plumbing works in the courtyard to “address age old drainage issues”. The projects are now in the final phase of completion.

Other works that have been carried out thus far include:

• the renovation of all student and staff restrooms at Northlands Primary School

• renovations of upper restrooms at Victor Scott Primary School

• the purchase of three playgrounds for Gilbert Institute, Harrington Sound and West Pembroke Primary Schools

• netball court resurfacing projects at West End, Prospect and East End Primary Schools

• tent fumigation at West Pembroke and Elliot Primary Schools

• hallway and classroom floor resurfacing projects at Southampton and Prospect Preschools and at Port Royal, Purvis and Victor Scott Primary Schools

• safety perimeter fencing at St George's Preschool and East End Primary

Additional maintenance tasks that were scheduled included pest control assessments, fire alarm inspection testing and water fountain maintenance as well as the cleaning and power washing of walkways at various schools.

“At this point I would like to thank the team and the Ministry of Public Works for engaging in a collaborative partnership with the facilities team and the Department of Education,” he added. “Both teams remain diligent in the execution of the projects. Job well done to everyone.”

“Every year this is a time of the year that has a bit of anxiety in the air, some anticipation, even some excitement as we get our schools together,” said Mr Cannonier. “To our team that is standing around us, I just want to first say to them thank you very much for the wonderful work that you have been doing.

“This year over $2 million was spent on school maintenance — $600,000 was spent on painting alone to private contractors.

“I am excited to know that school will be starting and our kids will be ready to come into a wonderful school. So I'm glad to see that we have a maintenance programme together that addresses the issues that have gone back decades. What we must understand is that many of our schools are very old and they require maintenance but with this programme that we do have we can address these issues in a scheduled way, a methodical way and ensure that we are getting the schools to where they need to be so that our students and teachers can be happy. It is a priority.”

Elliot principal, Kimberly Creighton, said: “I'd like to add my thanks to the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Public Works and all the private contractors that came to Elliot and worked the entire summer to ready our school for the return of our students and our staff. It has been wonderful to come back to a building that is bright, it's clean, it's fresh and I'm sure that when the staff and the students return they will also appreciate all the work that has been done to make our school building a pleasant environment to be in.”

Wayne Scott, Minister of Education, looks over text books for the upcoming school year at Elliot Primary School (Photograph by Rajan Simons)

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Published August 31, 2016 at 4:52 pm (Updated August 31, 2016 at 4:52 pm)

Schools ready after summer renovations

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