Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 18th 2017 Contents A22 opinion
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
on unhealthy foods
The recent call for the Government to ban the
importation of unhealthy foods which lead to
life-threatening diseases is indeed one to be sup-
ported. Unhealthy foods lead to obesity, tooth
decay, high blood pressure, high cholesterol,
heart disease, diabetes, stroke, cancers and other
diseases which continue to plague many in T&T
and around the world.
Making changes to one's diet and losing a mod-
erate amount of weight greatly improves blood
pressure levels, lowers cholesterol, reduces the
risk of developing serious chronic illnesses and, as
a result, reduce the amount of money that has to
be spent by yourself and the government to treat
with these life threatening diseases.
What about well-being
of St Agnes teachers?
I would like to share the plight of the St Agnes An-
glican Primary School. For the past ten years or
more, the school has been severely understaffed
due in large measure to the continued poaching
of their teachers. For a school with a population
of approximately 400 students, there are only 12
teachers. This is unacceptable.
Some teachers have classes of 40-plus students,
well above the acceptable of 25 30 students. The
Anglican Board seem to be ignoring our school,
since they are responsible for staf ing and must be
aware that the transferred teachers have not been
This is an unsafe environment for both teachers
and students and there cannot be proper super-
vision under these conditions. Nor can teachers
take time with pupils who may need a little more
attention to promote their learning.
What about the mental and physical health of
these few but dedicated teachers? A special thanks
to the social worker that has been helping our
students because we have been forgotten by the
There has been no special education teacher at
the school in a while and no visit by the Ministry
of Educations Student Support Services Division
either. Our children deserve all resources available
and this is not happening.
The school is also in need of repairs (leaking
roofs, electrical upgrade, toilets in disrepair etc)
and let's not forget the pigeons that no one wants
to deal with. We, the parent body, are only allowed
to do minor works and hit a brick wall when we
try to get anything else done. The Anglican Board
and the Ministry of Education need show more
concern for the education of our children, their
safety and that of the teachers at our school.
SEA isn't the issue
MARSHA L RILEY
It's that time of the year when par-
ents must igure out the choices and
how it all works.
Ensuring I am always up to speed
with all things parenting, means that
I sit and read through many groups
and from time to time I even post
things to start discussions for "re-
What seems abundantly clear to
me is that everyone seems to have
an opinion on how this whole SEA
placement thing works and the Min-
istry of Education would do great jus-
tice if they were to develop a series of
one-minute YouTube videos that can
effectively explain the system.
I would also like to make a plug for
them to use a young and dynamic
creative director who would develop
the series in a manner that appeals
to the masses.
The fact that so many people think
the system of placement is archaic is
evidence enough that it is simply a
matter of misunderstanding. From
the moment I explain that Singapore
uses a similar system at a similar age,
I hear the stutters.
So, if SEA isn't the problem what
is?Well for starters, if schools were
developed in a more standard man-
ner, then there would not be such
vast differences between schools
and the demand for a handful of
prestigious schools, would even out.
We cannot have one school with-
out teachers while another is using
We cannot have one school hav-
ing bathrooms with liquid soap, air
freshener, paper towels and long
mirrors, while others just hope for
lights so they can close the door
and see where they are doing their
business and as such, happily ight
up with the fowl smells and faeces
on the floor---at least the light would
help them to avoid it.
We cannot have some teachers
well equipped to explain how the
choice sheet should be illed out
while some parents are left won-
dering when, where and how. Why
aren't all Standard Five teachers sent
to a seminar at the start of the term?
(While we wait for the use of mod-
ern technolo y to take effect and the
YouTube series be created).
So, before we shout and scream to
remove SEA, let's dig a little deeper
and work towards ixing some of
the root causes. After all the same
system works marvellously in Singa-
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