The Spring Garden Primary and Infant School is in dire need of financial support to renovate its existing building; and relocate its Infant Department; as well as, repair the leaking roof of the school’s plant, which serves some 205 students.
Grace Hills-Malcolm, principal of the school, said that the roof of the present structure leaks; therefore, whenever it rains students are severely affected; and, there is need to relocate them in a more suitable location.
“The main projects that I would like to invite corporate Jamaica to assist us with, are to renovate the existing cottage, so that we can have a separate Infant Department,” she explained. “In addition, the roof, which currently leaks needs to be repaired.”
Mrs Hills-Malcolm stated that, if these changes were implemented, then the school would become a more positive learning environment.
“The Early Childhood Commission states that the Infant Department should be separate from the Primary Department; however, we are not able to do that now, based on what was built. Therefore, we are challenged to meeting the standards of the Early Childhood Commission,” she outlines.
The principal also noted that the current situation is so appalling that some parents have pulled their children from the school; and enrolled them in other institutions, which have a more conducive learning environment.
“We really need an Infant Department that is secluded; and, we have the space, however the building needs to be renovated,” she pointed out.
Mrs Hills-Malcolm informed that interested persons can contribute to the renovation of the cottage by donating to the initiative, under the Pledge2Build Project, which is mounted on the ISupportJamaica crowd funding platform.
Phillip Lindsay, operations officer, ISupportJamaica, at the JN Group, said that crowd funding is beneficial, as it is a positive method to gain exposure for projects, or business ventures, which need to raise financial support.
Mr Lindsay also explained that contributing to any initiative via the platform is simple and secure. Interested persons can donate by visiting the ISupport Jamaica.com platform at www.isupportjamaica.com, click on the project; and then click the “Fund Project” button.
In addition, donations can also be made via credit card; JN Live e-banking; by visiting any JN Branch or MoneyShop; and through interbank transfers.
The Spring Garden Primary and Infant School, formerly Spring Garden Ebenezer Elementary School, was first instituted in 1890 by Sir John Peter Grant under the reform of the Jamaica Baptist Union. It was located on the ground floor of the Spring Garden Ebenezer Church and governed by the Jamaica Baptist Union in collaboration with the Ministry of Education. As the school’s population increased, a building was constructed on the Baptist property in 1943, and hosted the school for some 35 years.
Over the decades, the school population increased, hence the need for additional space. In 1972, the school came under the full control of the Government of Jamaica, and a new school plant was built at its present location. This new school plant was opened in January 1978.
Most of the students attending the educational institution are from families with low socio- economic status; and are mainly subsistence farmers.
The students at Spring Gardens have performed well in the Grade Six Achievement Test, especially over the past three years; as they surpassed most of the national averages; and were ranked second and third in the parish of Trelawny in The Gleaner rankings for 2012-2015.