POND ISLAND – Two of the three pavilions which were received by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth, and Sport, via the Karel Doorman from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) in the Netherlands were officially handed over to the Charlotte Brookson Academy (CBA) on the Ring Road and the MAC CSE in Ebenezer on Friday, December 1st. The pavilions were part of the emergency aid sent from the Netherlands.
The CBA, formally housed at the old Government Administration Building, sustained severe damage, therefore rendering the building unfit and unsafe for the students. The Minister of Education, Culture, youth and Sport, made provisions for the CBA to receive a pavilion to ensure the school was able to continue with classes in a safe and conducive environment for the students, teachers and faculty.
The MAC CSE lost the top part of the wooden structure of the building, which left the 4th and 5th formers and some subject classes, with little to no classroom space. The pavilion is located on an open lot, next to the school premises, which was strategically placed nearby the main campus to cater to students and facilitate the rotation of classes.
The CBA pavilion was placed on the Ring Road, in close proximity to the John Larmonie Center, where the students receive art classes and the L.B. Scot Sports Auditorium for physical education.
Minister Jacobs informed the students and staff, as well as the board members of CBA who were present for the handing over of the keys, of her excitement to see the performing arts school receive a structure they can now call home.
We experienced some delay in getting the pavilions usable for the schools. The preparatory works needed to erect the pavilions took some time, however, the Ministry ECYS would like to thank VROMI with the assistance of Windward Roads for ensuring the properties were well prepared for the foundation of the pavilions.
Thereafter, electricity, water and sewage lines had to be installed on the properties to ensure the safety and hygiene for the students and teachers. Furthermore, the air-condition units, which were originally sent, were incompatible with the electrical system on St. Maarten. OCW, after much deliberation came to a consensus to purchase the new AC units which would be compatible on our electrical feed.
Minister Jacobs and the Ministry ECYS continue to work closely with the school boards to ensure all are well equipped to teach the students and ensure the students are not lagging behind with school material post Hurricane Irma.
Minister Jacobs handed over the keys to the front, back, classrooms and restroom doors and urged the students, teachers and faculty to utilize the pavilions to the full extent, keeping in mind they are temporary structures, which would not be able to endure too much wear and tear.
PHOTO CUTLINE: Minister Silveria Jacobs with Board member of the MAC Clayton Holiday.