Defending champions Windward Road Primary and Junior High lead the overall points standing after five finals on day one of the Institute of Sports (INSPORTS) Junior High School Athletics Championship at Stadium East yesterday.Windward Road also lead the girls’ section with 35 points, while John Mills are in front in the male category on 17.50 points.The Oral Whilby-coached Windward Road won two finals yesterday to accumulate 52.50 points and lead ahead of main rivals John Mills, who won one final and have amassed 47.50.Whilby described the day as a very good one, noting that his team exceeded expectations after winning two five finals.Michaelia Wilson took the girls’ Class One high jump with a leap of 1.54 metres, while Kishuana Smith took the girls’ shot put open with a throw of 9.63 metres. They also took silver in the Class Two girls’ high jump and Class Three boys’ long jump.Calabar’s Kevin Smith won the boys’ Class Two high jump with 1.69 metres and Braeton’s Mickel Wilson won the Class Three long jump with 5.05 metres.”We had some good results and some valuable points are on the board, so it was a fairly decent first day,” said Whilby. “Tomorrow (today), we anticipate another good day; there will be 21 finals, and we expect to be out front again tomorrow.”They (John Mills) are in many finals, and we are also in most finals with two athletes, so it’s going to be a straight shoot-out between us and John Mills and may the best man win,” he stated.John Mills’ only finals success on the day came from Shella Hamber (4.32m) in the Class Three girls long jumpHowever, coach Ransford Spalding was pleased with his team’s performance on the opening day.”All in all, I am satisfied with the performance of my team; we are just four points behind and they are giving a good account of themselves,” he said.Twenty-one finals are scheduled for today’s second day, with the first event set to begin at 9 a.m.
2017 NGSA resultsBY VAHNU MANIKCHANDAfter years of Guyana struggling with low pass rates in Mathematics at theEducation Minister Nicolette HenryNational Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) examination, new measures implemented have resulted in improved performances recorded this year.This was revealed by Education Minister Nicolette Henry on Friday as she announced the results of this year’s NGSA.Given the continued poor performance in Mathematics; one of the core subjects, President David Granger through his Cabinet stepped in to have an emergency Mathematics intervention plan.This move resulted in the Ministry implementing recommended measures such as training of teachers in content and methodology, developing learning communities where teachers were able to share information and experiences regarding mathematical concepts, and the recruitment of monitors and coordinators to ensure that the emergency plan was implemented in the classrooms.Enhancement of public relations, parental involvement in the education of children and acquisition of support materials for students such as mock exams were also among the new initiatives undertaken by the Ministry.These measures, Minister Henry noted, have been fruitful given the improvedA packed room in the boardroom of the Education Ministry where the 2017 NGSA results were announced on Fridayperformances at Mathematics, which recorded a whopping 32 per cent increase when compared to last year in the number of students who obtained 50 per cent and more pass rate.Over the past three years, the trend of Maths performance is 37.49 per cent pass rate in 2015, 13.85 in 2016 and 45.6 per cent this year. This year, the students were tested in this subject based on their knowledge, algorithmic thinking and reasoning.Nevertheless, the similar increasing trend was also seen in the other subject areas.In 2015, English recorded 45.88 per cent, 41.62 per cent the following year and in 2017 54.1 per cent pass rate of students gaining more than 50 per cent. “This is the first time in many years that we were able to get over 50 per cent passes in a subject area and that is absolutely phenomenal,” the Minister stated.For this subject, the candidates were tested in the areas of reading, comprehension and vocabulary; structure and mechanics; content, focus, vocabulary, language and organisation.The figures for Science were 44.12 in 2015, 27.55 in 2016 and 46.3 per cent this year. In this subject, they were tested for knowledge, comprehension and application.Meanwhile, there was a 46.5 per cent pass rate recorded in 2015 for Social Studies, 46.1 per cent in 2016 and 47.6 per cent in 2017. Knowledge, conceptual understanding and use of knowledge were the areas tested.Going forward, Minister Henry outlined that the Ministry has very ambitious but realistic targets that would ensure the students can realise their full potential. She noted that they will be focusing on these structural interventions undertaken to work assiduously to achieve their objectives.“We believe here in education that if we are to increase across the board in terms of quality and delivery, our objective is to ensure that irrespective of which school you would be placed or which region you’re from that you are reaching your best potential,” she asserted.Zooming in on the measure implemented, the Minister underscored the importance of some such as parental involvement. She noted that the Ministry cannot achieve its goal if parents are not involved in the process and play their part in moulding the children. “So it’s a collaborative process,” she posited.Meanwhile, Chief Education Officer Marcel Hutson said this year’s stellar performance represents a turning around in the education sector. He noted that the Ministry will retain and build on those plans and measures that have worked so far to repeat this year’s performance in the future.On this note, he urged that support be placed behind these students. “We will hold high expectations of our students. If you don’t feel our children can perform they will not perform, if you believe that there is something in them that will make them do well you will push and cause them to do well…,” Hutson remarked.Furthermore, the Chief Education Officer outlined that going forward, the issue of accountability will be brought into focus.“Accountability of student’s performance at the level of the school and classroom will be brought sharply into focus. Schools have to perform, we can’t have schools that are not performing for decades and nothing is done about that. Schools must perform,” he stated.Moreover, Hutson warned the education officers at the different level not to be complacent following this high of success, which was achieved in such a short time.“Our watch words will be sustainability and continued improvement because there’re times when we could become cocky and believe that we’re doing well and we lose focus… So we have to sustain what has worked and is working even after we get as close as possible to the 100 per cent mark,” noted the CEO.Cabinet in October of 2016 had mandated that a strategy be established targeting improvements in students’ performance in the core subject areas. That plan, which was spearheaded by the Chief Education Officer, was subsequently approved and implemented.
AdoptAClassroom.org, the award-winning national non-profit organization that helps teachers and students get the materials they need to learn and achieve in the classroom, is proud to announce its inaugural partnership with the national off-price retailer, Burlington Stores.COMMON Joins AdoptAClassroom.org and Their Partner Burlington Stores to Support Teachers and Students NationwideThe two have combined forces this back-to-school season to launch a national point-of-sale campaign in all 599 Burlington stores nationwide to raise funds for classrooms in need across the country. Joining their efforts is Oscar winning actor and musical artist Common and his mother, a 35-year educator and Chicago Board of Education member, Dr. Mahalia Hines. Together, with their relentless passion and activism for education, the mother-and-son duo have worked with hundreds of students in Chicago to provide opportunities, resources and tools to help them become future leaders.Ninety-one percent of K-12 teachers purchase classroom supplies out of their own pockets, spending on average $600 of their own money each year, with nearly twenty percent of teachers spending more than $1,000 annually. As a result of this campaign, Burlington hopes the funds raised will lessen this burden on teachers and help provide them with the support and classroom resources they need to do their job and make a real impact with students.The fundraising effort launched July 9th at all 599 Burlington stores across the country, encouraging customers to donate $1 or more at checkout to support AdoptAClassroom.org. The back-to-school campaign will run through August 19, 2017. All funds raised will be disbursed to teachers this fall in communities where Burlington operates stores. Additionally, for each new store Burlington opens across the country this fall and next spring, they will adopt all teachers in a school within close proximity to the new store. This is yet another demonstration of Burlington’s on-going commitment to giving back where their associates and customers live and work.Today, Common joined AdoptAClassroom.org and Burlington Stores to announce a surprise donation of $10,000 to adopt the Renaissance School of the Arts in Harlem, New York. Each teacher will receive funding from AdoptAClassroom.org towards school supplies such as Chromebooks, calculators, book sets and science kits, amongst a multitude of other items, so that their students have access to what they need to learn and prosper in the upcoming school year.“Growing up, I watched how my Mother cared for her students, both as an educator and outside of the classroom. I realized very early just how important it is to have an adult in your corner, and for many kids that adult is often a teacher,” said Common. “I’m proud to support AdoptAClassroom.org and their partnership with Burlington to help provide classroom supplies to teachers and students in need.”“At Burlington Stores, giving back is a part of our culture as a caring company and we know the importance of supporting teachers and their students. This back to school season, we are excited to partner with AdoptAClassroom.org to be able to provide the necessary funding so that teachers can get the supplies they need for their students to succeed,” said President, CEO and Chairman of Burlington Stores, Tom Kingsbury.“We are thankful to Burlington and their millions of customers and thousands of associates nationwide for their support to help us further our mission. This initiative will help to fill the resource gap in classrooms across the country,” said Executive Director of AdoptAClassroom.org, Ann Ness. “We look forward to getting even more classroom materials into the hands of students through this meaningful partnership.”We encourage customers to shop Burlington for all their back-to-school needs this summer and donate $1 or more at checkout now until August 19th to help support teachers and their students locally and nationwide.For more information visit BurlingtonStores.com or AdoptAClassroom.org.