Sunday 20 September, 2020

Half of St George Secondary's students without access to e-learning

Principal of St George Secondary, Dennis Browne(L) receiving a cheque along with 2 members of the board from Karen Mcclean Bishop from Sunshine Optimist Club (2nd R)and Head of retail and commercial banking at First Citizen's, Cheryl-Ann LaRoche (R)

Principal of St George Secondary, Dennis Browne(L) receiving a cheque along with 2 members of the board from Karen Mcclean Bishop from Sunshine Optimist Club (2nd R)and Head of retail and commercial banking at First Citizen's, Cheryl-Ann LaRoche (R)

Half of the students of St George Secondary are still without access to the e-learning portal.

This from the Principal of St George Secondary, Dennis Browne. He made the statement at the donation of 30 tablets from the Sunshine Optimist Club.

"Our roll is just over 700 [students] and to date just below half of that are currently involved with the online instruction and with this donation that will indeed change that for few. But we will continue to work with the Ministry of Education and other stakeholders in getting that assistance for our students so that more students can be online.

"So we are entirely grateful to the Sunshine Optimist Club for the work that they have been doing for St George Secondary School." Principal Browne said.

Sunshine Optimist Club President, Karen Bishop-Mcclean said after immediately hearing of the need for the tablets they began reaching out to potential donors and sponsors with First Citizens coming on board offering a $10,000 donation for the tablets.


And even with this donation, Bishop-Mcclean spoke to the urgent need for more sponsorship because she knows that students at St George, as well as St Giles Primary, are still in need of tablets.

"When we spoke to the guidance counsellor there was a need for the tablets for the children to log on to the portal and we started our reach out venture and First Citizens was keen to come on board. We also sponsor St Giles Primary School and we are trying to get some for them as well. This doesn't adequately cover all the students but we are still trying," Mcclean said.

Head of retail and commercial banking at First Citizens Bank, Cheryl-Ann LaRoche said the bank was honoured to assist at this time in whatever small way they could as COVID-19 had presented so many challenges to the student body.

"First Citizens bank has always supported social initiatives. While I am standing here today and hearing a lot of thank yous, we as a bank feel very honoured to be a part of helping the school and the students to achieve their goals through these challenging times even more so," LaRoche said.

The donation was part of the work that the Sunshine Optimist Club has been undertaking with St George Secondary over the past four years through various programmes. However, there is still a clear need for more corporate assistance if the Club is meant to better assist all schools under its mandate.

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