Clergyman wants high school for Kitson Town

Sunday, July 14, 2019

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President of the Jamaica Baptist Union (JBU), Reverend Norva Rodney, is urging the Government to establish a high school in the rural St Catherine community of Kitson Town, to cut the travel time for scores of students.

According to Rev Rodney, who is a resident of the community, too many children from the area have to travel long distances to the nearest high schools, and while Kitson Town Primary School needs infrastructure upgrades, he believes that the time has come for the young people to benefit from a secondary educational institution in their community.

“We can't allow a situation to continue whereby so many persons in this part of God's world have to be travelling out to a high school. We need a high school in Kitson Town community. People in the area should stop looking outside the community,” Rev Rodney said.

He made the comments while addressing the recent school-leaving exercise of Kitson Town Primary School, held at the Kitson Town Baptist Church, where he is serving as pastor. The school, which is the only one of its type in the community, was established by the church. Rodney is the board chairman.

Joining the call, president of the National Parent-Teacher Association (NPAJ), Dr Lennon Richards, who was the keynote speaker at the event, said that for many years the residents of Discovery Bay had been lobbying for a high school in that St Ann community, and “come this September, there will be a school named Discovery Bay High School”, he said.

Dr Richards, in pledging his support to the quest for Kitson Town to get a high school, told the audience that he is a member of the steering committee which is coordinating efforts to transition the Discovery Bay All Age School into a high school, and “I want to commit myself,” to the Kitson Town efforts, he assured the Reverend and the community.

In recent years, the area has seen several housing developments, adding to the population, and president of the Kitson Town Community Development Committee (CDC), Devon Thompson, said the call for a secondary education institution in the area is a “great idea”, as the community is known for “very strong academic achievements”.

Thompson pointed out that for children to access high school education, they had to travel to Spanish Town, or Brown's Hall, “so, our strategic location allows for it, and our demographic also allows for the improvement of our educational facility to a high school. We are poised for it, and the CDC will do all that it can do to support this effort”, he said.

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