Leaks, faulty sewer among issues at Princes Town West Secondary School


Princes Town West Secondary (PTWSS) students and staffers say their school is "falling apart", there are health and safety issues, and the ongoing problems are worsening every day.

They are pleading with the authorities to intervene and fix the issues.

One parent said her child complained that there are leaks everywhere whenever it rains. There are also problems with the sewer system.

"When rain falls, no one can move from place to place. Everywhere leaks. There are holes in the galvanise and growing white-like substances on the walls.

"The ceiling is falling apart. There are corroded staircases. There are exposed electrical fittings. We have a smelly sewer, and we cannot function when it rains," a parent said.

Several parents and staffers have complained to Newsday but did not want their names published, fearful of victimisation.

Newsday learned that last week, 12 form six students developed skin rashes and had to seek medical attention. Two staffers also developed rashes, and doctors said it was contact dermatitis.

"There is an outbreak of something. We do not know what it is. We have refurbished furniture, and we do not know what materials were used, but it is clearly the cheapest of the cheap," another person said.

"People with allergies complain as soon as they enter the compound. When they leave, the itching reduces and goes away.

"There are water leaks in the staffroom. The tiles in the female staffroom are lifted, and some of the toilets are non-functional. The ceiling tiles at Block C collapsed last week."

A few days ago, the school was sanitised, but students and staffers said the problems persist.

On Wednesday, the Education Minister, Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly, said: "The most critical of these issues are in the process of being addressed."

No further information was given.

Calls and messages to the TT Unified Teachers' Association (TTUTA) president, Martin Lum Kin, went unanswered.

Newsday also called the newly-elected president of the National Parent-Teacher Association (NPTA), Walter Stewart, for comment.

He did not want to comment "at this time until all the facts and evidence are revealed."

He added, "That notwithstanding, now may be a good time for all stakeholders, including the Ministry of Education, Educational Facilities Planning and Procurement Division (EFPPD), TTUTA, Principals Associations (primary and secondary) and NPTA to gather around the table and map out a plan of action for school enhancements and repairs."

Despite PTWSS infrastructural challenges, as well as cases of indiscipline, some staffers are pushing students to excel in all fields.

Students excelled at the San Fernando Arts Festival (Sanfest), with Anthony Alleyne crowned Mr Sanfest 2023.

The school has had other achievements, such as winning the 2023 Sanfest choir (national/patriotic) competition. The choir performed under the tutelage of Chloe Bishop and Ebony Edwards. The school also placed second in the drama category of Sanfest.

Besides Sanfest, the school also won the short dramatic presentation (customs and traditions) at the Prime Minister's Best Village Competition 2023.


"Leaks, faulty sewer among issues at Princes Town West Secondary School"

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