'Mathletic' win boosts morale at Cumberland High

Observer staff reporter

Monday, April 22, 2019

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FIVE students of Cumberland High led their school to victory in the Ministry of Education's region six 'Mathletic' competition, which culminated two Fridays ago at Clarendon College.

When head of the Math Department at the school, Ralston Timoll was contacted last week, he shared that he is elated about the institution's recent victory.

“I feel extremely great about the victory. The win has really lifted the morale of the students, and even the teachers. This victory has shown the students that they can be competitive and victorious in competitions like these,” he said.

“The students tend to have this weak spirit that says that they cannot achieve, but with this win they have realised that they can match up to other schools. They are definitely feeling good about themselves, and other students in the school are encouraged,” Timoll said.

He also shared that the school had not been leading in the first week of the competition, but with hard work they eventually attained the number one spot.

“After we took the lead and students were made aware of this, a lot of them wanted to know how they could enter the competition. Unfortunately, only a limited number of grade seven students could participate,” Timoll explained.

He said, too, that when parents and other people visit the school they are excited, because they see that great things are happening at Cumberland High School.

Teacher Rochelle Palmer, who joined the Cumberland High staff in October last year, took on the task of coaching the students and ensured that they prioritised and overcame the different challenges during the preparation process.

“I am very excited for myself, the students, and the school,” Palmer said. “Preparation, in terms of academics, was not difficult, but other boulders presented themselves — and I worked hard to ensure the students pushed forward.

“The competition lasted for 12 weeks and at times they got discouraged, but with some encouragement they pushed forward,” she said.

Palmer also added that after the competition, several students approached her to enquire about other math competitions in which they can participate.

“It has really boosted their confidence and they can't wait for the next opportunity to showcase their talent,” she said.

The Mathletic competition for grade seven students attending schools in the Ministry of Education's Region Six area began in January. Over 12 weeks, they were given weekly tasks they had to successfully complete. Approximately 19 schools participated but two Fridays ago, at the finals of the competition at Clarendon College, Portmore high school was victorious.

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