It's Burnt Savannah!
St Elizabeth tops Clean Schools competition
MANDEVILLE, Manchester — Three months into the first term of the school year, a total of 38 schools from the parishes of Manchester, Clarendon and St Elizabeth took the plunge to participate for top prizes in the annual National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) Clean School Competition.
When the curtain came down on the challenge at the Mandeville Parish Church Hall, recently, Burnt Savannah Primary emerged the winner among the schools in St Elizabeth and the defacto champion for the region.
For their efforts they received monetary reward of $85,000 and trophies.
"A great deal of work was put in...," said principal of the 100-year-old institution, Emily Smith.
She said more intense work went into keeping the school and its surroundings clean during the competition, but on a regular basis the school yard is divided into sections and each grade has responsibility for an area and incentives are given for the students' work.
Smith boasted that her school was regional champion in 2007 and 2008 and added that some parents admit to choosing the institution for their children based on how the environment is kept.
She said that members of the Environment Club have been able to assist in extending the message of reducing, reusing and recycling waste within the general community where the school is located.
For the sectional prizes, Burnt Savannah placed first in a cultural presentation on the topic and third in a Waste to Art category where a laundry basket made from plastic bottles headed the creative items on display. Newcomers Sanguinetti Primary in Clarendon and Frankfield Primary in Manchester were applauded for making it to the final round.
Stacey-Ann Anderson, Customer Relations Officer of the Southern Parks and Markets Waste Management Limited and competition co-ordinator for the region said the event was in its eighth year with 12 first-time participants.
"Schools' efforts far exceeded our expectations and commendation should be given to the administrators and teachers that helped to make the competition a reality," said Anderson.
Minister of Local Government and Community Development Noel Arscott in an address said that projects from waste material can be identified within schools and communities to generate income.
In line with the theme of the event, he reminded the gathering that 'Jamaica's Beauty is our Duty' and everyone had to work together to keep the country clean.
- Alicia Sutherland