Ministry to probe PSS graduation saga

(source: citvyl.com)

(source: citvyl.com)

The Ministry of Education said it is probing complaints made by parents of students attending Pares Secondary School (PSS) that their children are being penalized for something they did not do.

OBSERVER media was informed by a number of irate parents that fifth formers who will be graduating this year will not get their school leaving diplomas and Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) certificates until each graduate pay $75 towards sourcing paint to repaint some school walls that had been defaced.

Deputy Director of Education Clare Browne said the ministry has been notified of the situation but it is not prepared to comment until after it has conducted its own investigation.

“We are investigating, we don’t have any details, parents have just said whatever but we don’t know exactly what is happening,” Browne said yesterday.

OBSERVER media a copy of a letter that was sent home to parents of the entire fifth form student body of PSS. The letter stated that because some of the students wrote their names on the walls, every member of the graduating class needed to contribute to the $8,000 needed to restore the wall.

(More in today’s Daily Observer)

 

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17 thoughts on “Ministry to probe PSS graduation saga

  1. This school has had a serious graffiti problem for ages. The classrooms, the halls. etc. First to fifth. However this set of students wrote ‘ Class of 2014′ on the wall and drew and wrote a whole set of names, including the principal’s name. It isn’t art. It looks exactly like their uniforms after their have friends sign them on the last day of school. They took pictures too and posted them on the internet. They were proud to deface the school’s property so they should also be proud to be apart of getting it repainted. Who didn’t do it know who did and all of them were posing in front of it. All of them should be held responsible and thus send a strong message out the the next set of students to follow.

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    • I totally understand this ,they attempted to do us that well…threat to cancel graduation cuz fresh painted walls had a few graffiti.
      $75 is too much tho on top of graduation fee n ball expense….. Who didn’t do it probably witnessed it or encourage… Jus pay up da money all dat in it

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  2. I read the comments that were left regarding the article and it left me with a very heavy heart on several counts. The public is always so ready to berate, belittle, and contradict the decisions made by educators, as well as uphold, and make excuses for children that individuals looked at the picture at the top of the article and automatically assumed it was the wall in question. Contrary to popular belief educators are not in the jobs they are in simple because they have a desire to be unfair and cruel to children. Education is not simply about teaching academics, it is about preparation for life. That includes teaching boundaries, acceptable behavior, and the age old lesson that actions have consequences. There is something called collective responsibility that young people need to learn, because in the REAL WORLD it exists. Sadly many parents often only remember that they have children who have rights they can fight for when they think that they are being taken advantage of. As an educator I know that there are many issues that schools need and beg parent to put pressure on the ministry of education about, with little or no positive response from parents. Issues that would have enhanced the learning experience of their children and the space they are asked to learn in. The article does not have pictures of the actual damage that was done so the figure called should not be questioned until the actual damage is seen. Every day I hear persons voicing concern over the level of crime in this country. What we fail to realize is that in many ways we help to create these criminals by the way we respond to issues during their school life. We must stop giving these young people this false sense of entitlement. We must let them understand that they have to be held accountable for their actions. This is the only way to produce men and women who are productive, valued citizens.

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    • This collective punishment is evil. I hate collective punishment such as this. It used to happen daily @ PMS when I was a student in the 60′s and I still remember the injustice carried out on innocent students up to this day to all students in a class by Basil Peters because the lazy teacher or principal were too lazy to use their academic investigative skills to detect the guilty one/s. If they do not know who did it then you cannot punish all the innocent students. It reminds me of what I read about slavery when Massa used to beat all the slaves because one slave slip. Call in the police and let them investigate. Be proactive and install cameras that work 24/7 that can be reviewed and you will find your criminal. It is about time for justice to prevail in the land because this is a silly punishment that will create more criminal minds.

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      • Citizen,

        One cannot be proactive and install cameras if the incident has already happened. Yes, they SHOULD be installed to prevent possible future incidents, but still, how do we deal with the present issue of finding those vandals responsible? Also, this is a public school. Who will PAY for the cameras? May I add that this school, since its inception some 40+ years ago has YET to be fenced (just ask the burglars who frequent the premises on a regular basis).

        Is it also possible that this collective punishment is a means of ferreting out the would-be vandals? I am sure that if an innocent student went forward with the names of the perpetrators, a more just solution could be found. Or does no one want to “rat out” anyone else?

        I see reference to slavery here, but what of the recklessness and disrespect to their school and its teachers? THEIR teachers? The teachers who, I assure you, are not all lazy but have toiled with them for years, long after-school hours and on weekends to get their SBAs and other projects completed? That is a slap in the face of the school that nurtured them the best way it could. Or is that act of vandalism a rebellion against the Massa and his whip?

        Don’t get me wrong, collective punishment isn’t always the way. I agree with you on that, but given the circumstances, there is little else that i can see the principal doing at this point. Remember, these students have finished their CXCs and besides returning for their results come August, have no reason to be concerned with what happens with their alma mater.

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        • Security and administration of the schools are the reasons why we the citizens paid our taxes. We paid for security cameras and fences. If the government did their due due diligence there would be cameras, fences, and security personnel who would be wide awake to catch this but instead they hired sleeping watchmen/women. I did not send my child to PSS to be no watchman so check with the Principal to find out who is ultimately responsible for the security, fences, and upkeep of the buildings and let them do their job. My child will not pay a red cent. Maybe if some of the politicians from this constituency will pay back the government what they took from the treasury there will be enough to go around to secure the schools.

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    • Primer, paint, brushes, rollers, tape etc are not cheap these days especially with ABST. And don’t forget labour since it will have to be done privately. However, maybe you can volunteer your services to lessen the painting cost.

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  3. Yes they may have defaced the school property but its beautiful they should have gotten them to do the wall at Yasco…Leave the wall it adds a bit of flare to the school…

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    • I hope u do realize that the wall pictured above is not the wall in question. I have seen a few of the pictures including a video of the said act, and what was done was distasteful. I was an educator at PSS recently and that same set of students know the rules about defacing school. It is in their policy handbook. Yes, collective punishment may not always be the way, but in this instance it is well deserved.

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  4. Although I do not condone student’s unruly & disrespectful behavior, the perpetrators should be brought to account, however, I think that what is been done on that wall is nothing short of great art, & whoever did it should be directing his talent to a future career.
    I hope the situation is resolved amicably.

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    • That’s not a picture of the wall in question at Pares Secondary School but a picture Observer got from the internet.

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      • I see that now, such a shame, I was impressed that we had such great artists.
        I would like to see what they did do though. Why on earth would Observer do that? I feel misled, although I missed the credit under the photo!

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    • Since it’s such great ‘art’ would you like to have some placed on your front porch or maybe all over your car, workplace and church? I really hope so because a lot of people are quick to support wrong doing except when it comes to their front door. Not defacing school property is written in most school rule books so going contrary to rules should be followed with appropriate consequences.

      You see, these are future employees and I am sure their employers would not appreciate their $8,000 desks and office space be tarnished. Now is the time to teach tomorrow’s leaders how to appropriately express themselves in society. Maybe some canvas donations would be timely for their future artwork.

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  5. Pares Resident July 5, 2014 at 06:23 - Reply

    I Would Like To Donate The Fine. Please Let The Students Go. The Perpertrator/a Will Eventually Be Caught.

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    • I do not think that you paying that fine will in anyway benefit the student. However I do believe that if you use that $8000.00 and purchase some books and donate to the school library the school and the students will benefit tremendously from that kind of contribuation

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