Upgrade for May Pen Infant School

Pexels Oleksandr Pidvalnyi 2831794
Back to school sign. Courtesy of Olexsandr Pidvalnyi

The May Pen Infant School in Clarendon is now a comfortable institution for educators and students, courtesy of donations by the Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education (CHASE) Fund.

The grant of over $100 million covered the construction and renovation costs for a two-storey building between November 2019 and March 2022. Principal Kim-Cay Brown said in a media release that with improving students’ attitude towards learning, the school is now better positioned to become certified by the Early Childhood Commission (ECC).

This ECC was established under the Early Childhood Commission Act (2003), “to improve the quality of early childhood care, education and development within the early childhood sector” in Jamaica.

The school’s building, health, and safety requirements for children, and adequate space for student and staff development is now approved by the ECC. “I am feeling overjoyed and elated having received this tremendous support from the CHASE Fund for the reconstructions and renovations. Our students are excited about learning in their new environment, and we are looking towards seeing improvements in the end of term assessments coming in December,” said Brown. The early childhood intuition has been furnished with safe and child-friendly indoor and outdoor equipment. These, include infrastructure that enables access to students with disabilities and promote growth among the 240 pupils enrolled. Also, there is a new perimeter fence that prevents vandalism and unauthorised access and now restrooms for students on every block with wheelchair access, modernised canteen area and w furnished kitchen, pantry, and lunchroom for students and staff.

The classrooms and offices are now furnished and ventilate with bathroom facilities for the principal, vice principal, and guidance counsellor. A records room and waiting area have also constructed, while the administrative building has been relocated to the second floor.

“I am also feeling blessed to be the principal. More persons are calling [about] registration and want their children to attend as early as three years old but [they]will have to wait until the child gets to four years old,” the educator said.

The building now conforms to the National Building Code and Jamaica Fire Brigade specifications. She added that the improvements have stirred an increased sense of pride among the school community and resulted in greater parental support. “We have received positive responses from not only students and parents but also teachers and community members. They love the appearance and layout of the facility. They are in awe each time they step foot onto the compound,” Mrs. Brown said.

Chief Executive Officer of the CHASE Fund, W. Billy Heaven, said advancing the infant school is a significant step in the efforts to develop rural Jamaica. The organisation places emphasis on projects at the critical stages of the early childhood education level. “The CHASE Fund’s aim is not simply to upgrade existing schools. Through our early childhood programmes, we are hoping to promote improvement in the health, education, and environment of children at the early childhood stage,” he added.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *