COVE Primary School near Lucea in Hanover now has a covered walkway, which better protects students from inclement weather, including providing easier access to the restrooms.
The $1.6-million project was undertaken by the Sandals Foundation, which recently handed over the facility during a ceremony held on the school grounds.
Principal of the institution, Patrice Campbell, in expressing gratitude, said that construction of the covered corridor has addressed a long-standing challenge at the 67-year-old institution.
“We always battled with the issue of students getting to and from the bathrooms in inclement weather, and we had to do something about it. I asked the Sandals Foundation to assist the school in building the covered corridor and they didn't hesitate to assist,” she said.
She noted that the walkway serves as a multipurpose facility, as it can accommodate classes, morning devotions, and function as a rest area during sports day and other school events.
Board Chairperson Dania Rosser, for her part, pointed out that the walkway provides additional space to accommodate face-to-face classes in keeping with the physical distance requirement.
Quality Education Officer Susan Simms, in her remarks, noted the value of public-private partnerships in improving school plants and making a positive change in the lives of students.
“We, the team members at Region 4, embrace the support and contribution to education by all stakeholders; indeed, this kind gesture is well appreciated. Positive school partnerships play an important role in decision-making and accountability and are often linked to strong relationships between schools, communities and families,” she said.
Meanwhile, executive director at the Sandals Foundation, Heidi Clarke, said that the new construction provides a more comfortable learning and teaching environment.
“This newly covered walkway will allow teachers and students to engage each other without interruption, thereby removing so many unseen learning barriers that may not currently be easily identified,” she said.
Over the years, the Sandals Foundation has supported Cove Primary School through the upgrading of the library, with career guidance seminars, targeted student and teacher training, as well as the donation of learning resources and sports supplies.