Sunday 20 October, 2019

Garcia: Issues at St Joseph school being addressed

Education Minister Anthony Garcia has given the assurance that the St Joseph Secondary School will be returned to a state of normalcy within a matter of days.

The school has been closed for the past two months after teachers refused to occupy the compound due to safety and health issues.

Students have been away from classes during that time.

Among the issues affecting the school, according to staff, is a rat infestation and structural problems.

Addressing the matter following a tour of the Tamana InTech Park in Wallerfield on Tuesday, Garcia said he was well aware of the problems faced by the school.

Asked if he planned to visit the school, however, he did not give a commitment.

“The Minister of Education cannot be expected to visit every school that has problems,” Garcia stated.

“However we are well aware of the constraints that exist at St Joseph Secondary.”

Garcia said the rat problem was due to a pile up of rubble at the school which has now been removed by the Tunapuna/Piarco Regional Corporation.

“In a matter of days things will return to normalcy,” he said.

Asked what measures would be put in place to ensure that students who have been out of class for two months would be able to catch up on their studies, Garcia said he had full confidence in the ability of the teachers at the school.

“Teachers always step up to the plate,” he said.

“I have full confidence that teachers will ensure that whatever time was lost will be recouped. I am not too fearful because I have ultimate faith in the teachers.”

Questioned on an incident that occurred at Hillview College on Tuesday, Garcia however said he was awaiting more information.

Bandits reportedly broke into the school, Garcia’s alma mater, on Monday night and stole a quantity of cash and a security camera system.

Police believe the security system was stolen as it may have captured footage of a murder that occurred in the area days earlier.

Garcia said he visited the school on Tuesday and saw several police on the compound conducting investigations.

However, he said he was unaware of the nature of the investigations or that a robbery had occurred.

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