Forms one to three students of the Carapichaima West Secondary School are asked to stay at home for the first week of the new term which starts on Tuesday. This comes after the principal of the school issued a letter to parents which said because of electrical issues and the danger there, a fire inspector had to close off the entire block.
The letter which was signed by the principal D Pitiram and dated December 29 said, “Only two form levels can be accommodated on any given day because we have very limited space. The staff has decided the best way moving forward is to have normal school for forms four and five and online schooling for forms one to three.”
It added, “The ministry (Ministry of Education) is well-informed of the problem and are working to get the entire school functional in as fast a period as possible.”
MP for Couva North Ravi Ratiram issued a release on Saturday in which he described the situation as “most unfortunate and regrettable.”
He said, “Yet again, the government continues to fail our nation's students at such a critical time when their education and schooling should be of paramount importance.”
He added, “The Minister of Education, Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly has clearly failed to effectively address the matter within the appropriate time, which speaks to either the minister's total incompetence or her ministry's abandonment of students attending the Carapichaima West Secondary School, situated in the constituency of Couva North.”
Ratiram called on the minister to “get to work in the interest of our nation's children, or step aside.”
Speaking to Sunday Newsday on the matter, Gadsby-Dolly said, “From time to time, infrastructural repairs at schools result in certain areas being inaccessible. When this happens, interim arrangements are made for educational continuity, and repairs are carried out in the shortest time frame possible, to restore full access to the school buildings. In this specific case, the principal would already have sent communication to parents on the matter, elucidating the approved arrangements for students while the electrical issue is resolved.”