IN JAMAICA: Robert Lightbourne High reaping success — after ranking bottom of secondary leadership as it now boasts a 43 per cent increase in maths, up from zero

Monday, August 03, 2015    
ROBERT Lightbourne High in Trinityville, St Thomas, which previously struggled with underperformance is reaping great success under its new leadership as it now boasts a 43 per cent increase in maths, up from zero ,and a 35 per cent hike in English in the 2014 Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC).
Students walk past the renamed reading lab at Robert
Lightbourne High School in Trinityville, St Thomas.
The school which was also severely under-populated has since received approximately 100 transfers from other institutions in the parish.
Interim Principal Alfred Thomas said the improvements in maths and English came as a result of the keen focus on literacy and numeracy as the school struggled with children reading below their grade level, some as low as the pre-primer stage.
"Seventy-four per cent of students were reading below the grade four level. We had students who were struggling to identify letters; therefore, we decided that it made no sense to have students struggling to identify letters; and, you are asking them to do 13 subjects," the principal said.
Against that background, the number of subjects carried by some students were reduced to eight; and, higher priority given to improving their literacy and numeracy competencies.
The school which is a participant in the JN Foundation iLead educational leadership programme is steadily pulling itself up from the bottom rung of the secondary education ladder since it was ranked at the bottom of secondary schools by Educate Jamaica and flagged as being in need of critical support by the National Education Inspectorate.
Acknowledging the challenges faced, at a recent town hall meeting held at the institution, Thomas explained that the school has managed to strategically use the difficulties it has been facing as opportunities for growth. more

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