Ministry of Education's National Examination Results Virtual Press Conference
The Minister of Education Jeffrey Lloyd terms the 2020 national examinations which were twice postponed due to the corona virus pandemic, a success. The ministry held a virtual press conference with the media on January 4th 2021 to address the Bahamas Junior Certificate (BJC) Bahamas General Certificate of Secondary Examinations results released in December.
Minister Lloyd announced that though slightly fewer students sat the exams, there were improvements over the 2019 results in six subjects in the BJC exams, and fifteen subjects in the BGCSE exams. 62% of BJC candidates achieved grades of A-D compared to 65% in 2019. 68% of BGCSE students received grades of A-D compared to 70% in 2019. One BJC student achieved 12 A’s and one BGCSE candidate achieved 13 A’s. The seven point grading system is from A-G.
Rotary Donates $102,000 to Digital Divide Initiative
A generous donation of $102,000 by the Rotary Clubs of Nassau pushed the Ministry of Education closer to its goal to ensure every child has access to an electronic device for the 2020/2021 school-year. This donation is earmarked for students and teachers in Abaco who were adversely affected by the ravaging effects of Hurricane Dorian in September 2019. Assistant Governor of Rotary Bahamas District 7020 East, Ken Strachan, in presenting the cheque said he was “pleased to be in such a setting”; as his organisation from March began formulating ways in which it could bring relief to the citizens of The Bahamas. The Rotary’s donation in partnership with ALIV and REV will absorb the cost of tablets and MiFi boxes for over 400 students and teachers on the island of Abaco.
Mr. Strachan noted that the data packages are exclusively for educational instruction and learning, and consequently students will not be permitted to use the devices for other purposes. The packages he said expires June 1st of next year. Over 200 tablets and MiFi devices have already been procured and are en route to Abaco. According to Mr. Strachan, as of Monday, November 30th, 2020, students and teachers will begin receiving their devices.
Minister of Education, Hon. Jeffrey Lloyd, expressed his appreciation not only as a leader in education, but as a fellow Rotarian. He stated that he is very proud of the organisation’s accomplishments, and is most grateful for its contribution to addressing the digital divide in The Bahamas.
Kendrick Delaney, Head of Digital Growth at ALIV said his company, along with REV is “committed to providing devices and the internet connectivity that really brings this to life”. “We can’t give measure to how much these devices and internet
connectivity will bring to The Bahamas”. Mr. Delaney added. The ALIV representative also noted that his company has provided an online donation platform for this cause which runs until December 31st, 2020. Interested donors he said are to log onto www.connectivity4all.com.
The donation was made during a ceremony held at the Ministry of Education’s headquarters on Thursday, November 26th, 2020. Numerous education officials, representatives of Nassau Rotary Clubs, ALIV and REV were present for the ceremony.
As a leading healthcare provider in The Bahamas, Doctor’s Hospital has been at the forefront of the COVID-19 fight. Now the hospital has intensified its commitment to mitigating the negative impact of the global pandemic, through its donation of 250 tablets to the Ministry of Education’s tablet drive.
CEO of Doctor’s Hospital Mr. Charles Sealey said his institution was pleased to make the donation and saw it as an investment in the children of the country, who are now forced to undertake learning virtually, due to the impact of COVID-19. He said there was a need for others to join in the initiative as the responsibility to educate our children requires a collaborative effort from all stakeholders, particularly those in the corporate sector.
On hand to receive the donation was Minister of Education Jeffrey Lloyd, along with Permanent Secretary Lorraine Armbrister and Director of Education Marcellus Taylor. They all expressed their appreciation to the hospital for the donation and assured the donor that the tablets would be distributed to students who are urgently in need of receiving a device.
The tablets have been forwarded to students in the following schools: D.W. Davis Junior High, C.I. Gibson Senior High, L.W. Young Junior High, Doris Johnson Senior High and C.R. Walker Senior High in even allotments.
The Bahamas Football Association, in conjunction with the District Grand Lodge Bahamas, have assisted the Ministry of Education in increasing its tablet complement by 300 devices. The tablets have been earmarked to be distributed to specific schools via the Aliv Company. Two hundred of the tablets were donated by the lodge and 100 were received from the football association.
Mr. Robert Deal, Grand Master of the District Grand Lodge Bahamas, along with Mr. Anton Sealey, President of the Bahamas Football Association, were on hand to present the devices to the Minister of Education Jeffrey Lloyd. The Minister, along with the Permanent Secretary Ms. Lorraine Armbrister and the Director of Education Mr. Marcellus Taylor, commended the two community organizations for their timely donation.
Bahamian students displaced by monster storm Hurricane Dorian last year September received a generous donation of school supplies on Thursday, November 5th, after a drive initiated by third grader, Caylee Matejicka from Cedar Grove, New Jersey. Upon learning of the devastation and loss brought on by the storm, Caylee through the assistance of her parents Chad and Cheryl Matejicka organised a school supplies drive within her school, South End Elementary. During yesterday's ceremony held at the Ministry of Education's Headquarters, displaced students attending Sadie Curtis Primary were the first to receive the donated supplies. The school's principal Mrs. Carolyn Mitchell expressed her gratitude for the altruistic gesture.
Also expressing thanks on behalf of the students was student, Delronae Mitchell. Caylee and her parents along with principal of South End Elementary, Lynn DiMatteo and student Daniel Barallari joined yesterday's ceremony via zoom.
"I wanted to help them out. So I did what I can." Caylee said.
Minister of Education Jeffrey Lloyd, Director of Education Marcellus Taylor, and Permanent Secretary Lorraine Armbrister were in attendance and they expressed gratitude for the extension of kindness by the Matejicka's and the family of South End Elementary School.
The supplies will be further distributed to students in other districts.
The Ministry of Education’s campaign to ensure that every public school student gets an electronic device for the virtual school got a big boost in a short presentation ceremony at the Ministry’s headquarters on University Drive on Thursday November 5th. Leno Corporation partnered with the MOE in September 2020 pledging $60,000. They made good on the pledge donating tablets totaling $60,000. Corporate Bahamas and private sponsors joined the campaign donating an additional $183,000. This included two surprise donations: $40,000 from the United Nations’ International Office for Migration earmarked for children in the Kemp Road community including immigrant children there and Aliv’s CEO David Blackburn donated $10,000 for children with special needs.
Other donations included the Bahamas Cooperative Credit Union League president Hilton Bowleg who presented 125 tablets totaling $30,000 to the principals of C.C. Sweeting , Government High, T. A. Thompson and C.H. Reeves schools; Michelle Fields, Superintendent of the Insurance Commission of the Bahamas donated $10,000 for the children of Uriah McPhee Primary School; Everette Mackey presented the Boys Brigade cheque of $15,000 earmarked for student members ; Olympic gold medalist Pauline Davis Thompson patron of the Run for Pompey Foundation donated ten tablets for students of Exuma. There were a number of private donations including $7,000 from a church who wished to remain anonymous.
More students of the T.G. Glover primary school will be able to access lessons on the Ministry of Education’s virtual school platform after Mr. Dean of United Sanitation Company donated eighty tablets and Mi-Fi devices to the school located on Horse Shoe Drive on November 6th 2020. The island’s oldest private garbage collection company has been giving back to the school located a stone’s throw from his Farrington Road and Rampart Close home for more than twenty years. In fact, United Sanitation Company donated the school’s first computers for students years ago.
Minister of Education the Hon. Jeffrey Lloyd thanked Dean for the company's donation while inviting more individuals and corporate partners to join the campaign to ensure that all of the nation’s 46,000 public school students have a device to register on the Ministry’s virtual school platform. To date more than 30,000 students are registered as New Providence, Abaco and Eleuthera fully conduct classes virtually. Principal Sheniqua Curry thanked Mr. Dean pledging that her team will ensure that many more of the school’s 650 students register for virtual instruction.
Pictured with Minister Lloyd, Principal Curry, Henry Dean, Director Marcellus Taylor, Dep. Director Sharon Poitier, employees of United Sanitation, Dean’s daughter deacon Allison Dean and students of T G Glover.