PHILIPSBURG – Two of the three pavilions which were received
by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth, and Sport, via the Karel Doorman
from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) in the Netherlands
were officially handed over to the Charlotte Brookson Academy (CBA) on the Ring
Road and the MAC CSE in Ebenezer on Friday, December 1st. The
pavilions were part of the emergency aid sent from the Netherlands.
The CBA, formally housed at the old
Government Administration Building, sustained severe damage, therefore
rendering the building unfit and unsafe for the students. The Minister of Education,
Culture, youth and Sport, made provisions for the CBA to receive a pavilion to
ensure the school was able to continue with classes in a safe and conducive
environment for the students, teachers and faculty.
The MAC CSE lost the top part of the wooden
structure of the building, which left the 4th and 5th
formers and some subject classes, with little to no classroom space. The
pavilion is located on an open lot, next to the school premises, which was
strategically placed nearby the main campus to cater to students and facilitate
the rotation of classes. The CBA pavilion was placed on the Ring Road, in close
proximity to the John Larmonie Center, where the students receive art classes
and the L.B. Scot Sports Auditorium for physical education. Minister Jacobs
informed the students and staff, as well as the board members of CBA who were
present for the handing over of the keys, of her excitement to see the
performing arts school receive a structure they can now call home.
We experienced some delay in getting the
pavilions usable for the schools. The preparatory works needed to erect the
pavilions took some time, however, the Ministry ECYS would like to thank VROMI
with the assistance of Windward Roads for ensuring the properties were well
prepared for the foundation of the pavilions. Thereafter, electricity, water
and sewage lines had to be installed on the properties to ensure the safety and
hygiene for the students and teachers. Furthermore, the air-condition units,
which were originally sent, were incompatible with the electrical system on St.
Maarten. OCW, after much deliberation came to a consensus to purchase the new
AC units which would be compatible on our electrical feed.
Minister Jacobs and the Ministry ECYS
continue to work closely with the school boards to ensure all are well equipped
to teach the students and ensure the students are not lagging behind with
school material post Hurricane Irma. Minister Jacobs handed over the keys to
the front, back, classrooms and restroom doors and urged the students, teachers
and faculty to utilize the pavilions to the full extent, keeping in mind they
are temporary structures, which would not be able to endure too much wear and