Education

COB president vetting process under way
COB president vetting process under way

January 21, 2014

AT least four of more than 20 persons who have applied to be President of the College of the Bahamas will start visiting the college community as part of a vetting process soon after they are publicly identified next week, Acting COB President Dr Earla Carey-Baines said yesterday...

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Sex predators hired in schools

January 21, 2014

THE vetting process for expatriate teachers is a crucial tool for the Ministry of Education as past shortfalls have resulted in hiring teachers who were sexual predators, Education Director Lionel Sands revealed...

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Launching of B.U.T. Share Offering
Launching of B.U.T. Share Offering

January 21, 2014

The Bahamas Union of Teachers is launching its Share Offering for members only to raise capital to build a state of the art Walkers Hall...

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The Bahamas Union of Teachers
The Bahamas Union of Teachers

January 20, 2014

The Bahamas Union of Teachers is very concerned about the instructions given to EXPATRIATE TEACHERS to be finger printed...

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Bennies to celebrate 100 years of the College of Saint Benedict

January 15, 2014

The College of Saint Benedict (CSB) in Minnesota, which forged a path of education, leadership and friendship for generations of women who are known as Bennies, celebrated its centennial year, and a century of connection in July 2013, but the celebration continues as the university's officials travel to different countries where there are Bennie alumni to celebrate with them, in an attempt to pull the alumni together.
And The Bahamas is the next stop on the world tour to celebrate the 100th anniversary of CSB. President MaryAnn Baenninger, who celebrates a decade of service to CSB, will be present at the Bahamian celebration on Saturday, January 25 to update Bennies on the state of the college at a gala banquet on Saturday, January 25 at Sapodilla Restaurant on West Bay Street.
Sister Annie Thompson, a Bennie from the Class of 1967 who is acting in the public relations roll for the celebration along with fellow Bennie, Renee Knowles, is happy that the celebration is coming to The Bahamas. Sister Annie is calling for all Bennies to participate.
"It's a celebration of 100 years of liberal arts education for women that started out in Minnesota, but has branched out to all parts of the world," said Sister Annie, adding that most of the foreigners who attended the school came from The Bahamas. "It's an outstanding women's liberal arts college, and they've produced many women in the Bahamas who have obtained an education in The Bahamas."
To date, Sister Annie says close to 800 Bahamian women have attended the university with about 600 having actually graduated.
The first Bahamian graduate was Virginia Baker in 1952. Telzena Coakley and Rosalba Lundy (deceased) were the second set of graduates in 1962, followed by Jacqueline Barnett-Bethel in 1964 and Sister Mary Benedict and Sister Annie in 1967.
Recalling her time at CSB, Sister Annie said she loved it there, even though when she went to Minnesota initially she did not intend to going to university.
"I went to go to the convent, where I thought I would go in and be cloistered for the rest of my life," she said. "But they said I had to go to school."
She did not regret it.
"It was a small, rural school of about 700 to 800. When I went, it was 60 in the freshman class, now it's 500 freshmen easy," said Sister Annie. "The College of Saint Benedict has done an excellent job and has incorporated all different nationalities and countries. It's a great university."
Sister Annie credits CSB with helping many of the country's teachers to obtain their Bachelor of arts degrees through the intervention of Coakley in 1974, when CSB started a four-week training course for teachers which then became the continued extension program from The Bahamas.
In 1979, Sister Annie started the freshman program with Ron Clarke and as a result they had girls and boys enrolled in the freshman program through St. Bens' in The Bahamas, and who could attend any accredited university they wanted to after that one year.
Ticket prices for the Bennies celebration are $100 per person. The banquet takes place 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. with the proceeds benefitting the Bahamian scholarship fund at CSB. Tickets can be purchased from Renee Knowles at The Catholic Archdiocesan Pastoral Office in St. Francis Xavier Cathedral yard between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays, telephone 322-8919 or from Sister Annie at St. Martin's Monastery, Nassau Street, telephone 323-5466 or 323-5517.

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Teachers educated about the environment

January 15, 2014

Claudette Rolle can't wait to up-cycle her large plastic bottles and turn them into bird feeders, after her participation in a one-day environmental education workshop at the Bahamas National Trust (BNT).
Rolle, the director of Catholic Education was among 240 Catholic School Board educators and staff who participated in the one-day workshops that took place on three islands -- New Providence, at the Retreat Garden, Grand Bahama at the Rand Nature Centre and on Abaco at St. Frances de Sales School.
Presentations included 10 ways that individuals could help the environment, which included hands on activities such as tree planting, turning trash into useful treasures and special activities on water conservation that have been developed as part of the Blue Water Project with the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC).
Teachers were also introduced to native plant identification as well as field trip opportunities that are available for their students at the national parks on New Providence, Abaco and Grand Bahama.
"The workshop coordinated by The BNT was undoubtedly a most profound way of making our employees aware that the expectation we have of students for sustaining and protecting the environment cannot be achieved unless we make a personal pledge to do likewise," said Rolle. "The experience for educators from all disciplines was awe-inspiring!"
The workshop came to be after Alexandria Bowe, curriculum officer for the Catholic School Board approached the BNT to partner with them in designing the workshop for the teachers that would emphasize environmental stewardship and provide the educators with hands-on activities that they could transfer to their classrooms, according to Portia Sweeting, director of Education at the Bahamas National Trust.
RBC donated tee-shirts, water bottles and other paraphernalia about their water conservation program for the educators.
The workshop was sponsored by the Sandals Foundation, an organization that supports educational and sustainable environmental projects as part of their commitment to the Caribbean community.
Chester Robards, the public relations manager at Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa & Resort, encouraged the educators to take the subject of the environment seriously and to transfer that to the students they impact.
"The environment is something that needs to be taken seriously and that we need you to take seriously, so that those lives you will continue to touch takes the sanctity of this ... the only sanctuary we know and call home seriously. Like Captain Planet once said: 'The power is yours'. And we need you to empower our youth," said Robards.
Educators and staff from Aquinas College, Every Child Counts, Grand Bahama Catholic High, Mary Star of the Sea School, St. Cecilia's, St. Francis De Sales School, St. Francis Joseph, St. Thomas More, and Xavier's Lower School participated in the workshop.

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Lighting the spark and nurturing the interest

January 15, 2014

In an effort to spark and nurture early interests, with the awareness that students will one day be employed professionals, the Guidance Department at Kingsway Academy recently hosted an interactive week of spiritual, physical and academic enhancement for their elementary school students.
Under the theme "Purpose Driven... Success Bound... Equipped for Service," the week was hosted for the purposes of emphasizing innate character traits, fostering an awareness of making the ideal future career choices and exposing students to the world of better, healthy living.
Kingsway Academy's elementary school guidance counselor, Sonia Bain said her ultimate goal was to empower the students to live wholesome, healthy and purpose-driven lives as they evolve in an ever-changing society.
The three-day event culminated with 'Super Heroes Day' for which girls created original princess crowns and wands and the boys created original capes reflecting positive character traits.
"One of the main objectives of the Guidance Department is to spark and nurture early interests, encouraging students to become who God intends for them to be. The highlight of this event was a K5 student who was torn between professions. She was adorned in doctor's attire from her waist up and ballerina attire from her waist down," she said.
During Career Day a fashion show was also staged. The all-inclusive teacher-student career catwalk spoke to what students want to be, and created a learning environment of fun and fellowship.
The week's activities concluded with a health and wellness day with a focus on culinary adventures. Students transformed into culinary artists for the day and created healthy treats. The more popular treat was the fruit kabobs, a medley of fruit on a wooden skewer. After eating their treats, students engaged in a school-wide Zumba workout with fitness trainers from J-Line Fitness.
"My aim is not only to train students in the King's way, but to ensure that they are fully equipped with all the necessary life skills, and exposed to all the positive attributes and behaviors that will encourage students that are purpose driven, success bound and equipped for service.

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Fifth grade student steps up to help her peers

January 15, 2014

Nine-year-old Tayler Johnson had the wish list for most little girls at Christmas -- the obligatory Nintendo games, a pair of boots, and hair accessories -- were among the things that she wanted, and she got them all and then some. But when her mother, Erica Johnson, pointed out to a pleased Tayler how fortunate she was as there were many children in The Bahamas that did not get anything for Christmas, that made the youngster sit back, take stock and decide that she wanted to do something for her peers who were less fortunate.
The fifth grade Yellow Elder Primary School student decided to make a donation to her school so that children who did not eat breakfast before coming to school would be able to get something to eat.
Taylor took $260 and purchased a supply of cornflakes, oatmeal, cream, sugar, spaghetti, noodles, spoons and bowls which she presented to the school. It was a gesture that made her mother proud.
"After she had opened her Christmas gifts, as we were talking, knowing the type of person that she is who likes to do community service, I said to her that she was so blessed and for her to think of some way that she could give back to less fortunate kids, or at least one child who is less fortunate than she is."
Johnson said Tayler, a prefect at the school, thought about it and after realizing that she could do anything, anywhere to help anyone, she decided she wanted to do what she could to help her peers at her school, as she realized there was a need there.
"She told me that she noticed that children would be going into the guidance counselor's office... She is a prefect, so I guess she's in the office more than I realized doing whatever duties she has to do as a prefect," said Johnson, who also teaches second grade at Yellow Elder Primary. "But she noticed that children were going into the guidance counsel office in the morning and some were eating breakfast because they didn't have any, so she said she could maybe do something there. I suggested to her that she go to the guidance counselor [Sherene Grey] when she had some time and to ask what was needed and she did that."
Johnson, who described Tayler as a loving and giving child who would go out of her way to make people smile, said she expected her child to step up to the plate to help someone less fortunate, but that she was surprised when Tayler decided she wanted to make her donation to the school.
"I didn't expect it to go back home to the school. I thought she would say there's a child at church that she would have wanted to buy a gift for ... I thought that may have happened, but I was happy to hear that she was thinking about Yellow Elder Primary School and that she could do something there, seeing that's the school that she attends."
To pay for the grocery items, Tayler was willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for someone her age. She was willing to spend $80 that she had won for selling the most cookies in the 36th Girl Guide Brownie Unit during Girl Guides Cookie Month. And she was willing to use it all to help her peers who did not get something to eat before coming to school, so that they would be able to eat.
But her mother knew that $80 would not go very far in the grocery store.
"As a mother I was thinking she's going shopping with $80, I don't know if that's going to be enough, so I offered to match her $80, then she decided to call her grandmother, Evie Sturrup and asked her to match her funds as well."
Tayler went shopping and did overspend. She purchased just over $260 worth of groceries.
Turning $80 into $260 worth of groceries to help ensure her peers get something to eat before school made Tayler feel proud. And she made the donation without fanfare, either. She says her peers do not even know what she did (at least not until now) and she didn't care whether they knew or not.
"It was a gift from the heart," said the fifth grade student who believes she got her giving spirit from her mother and grandmother.
"I realized that I am very blessed and children at my school get bullied because they don't get stuff like that [speaking about her Christmas gifts]. I wanted to give something to school to show that I care," she said.
Tayler, the last of three siblings, said she felt good about what she did and would do it again.
Her advice to her peers who may decide to emulate her is for them to not just give as she did.
"Give it as you really want to do it and it comes from the heart," she said.
While to many of her peers Taylor may be a "superhero" right now because she willingly sharing her bounty with them, she's still just your average kid. While she can boast of having a 3.76 grade point average, like most students she as a favorite subject (math) and a least favorite subject (science).
But she also knows that getting an education is important, especially as she wants to emulate her mother and become a teacher as well. She's already acting in that role as Taylor uses her dolls to help her study. She pretends her dolls are students and she goes over her lessons by teaching them.
"Going to school to me means that I will learn how to do my best and make others, and myself, proud."
Quite apart from her duties as a prefect, Tayler is also involved in Art Club, Student Christian Movement (SCM) and K Kids at school.

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One semester down, many more to go
One semester down, many more to go

January 08, 2014

With one semester under his belt, and about one million and five to go (in his words) Shannon Butler who is arguably one of the country's brightest minds in the Class of 2013...

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Lyford Cay International School achieves International Baccalaureate extended essay success
Lyford Cay International School achieves International Baccalaureate extended essay success

January 08, 2014

As part of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program, Lyford Cay International School (LCIS) students in Grades 11 and 12, complete an extended essay of 4,000 words...

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Bowling as a means to an education
Bowling as a means to an education

January 08, 2014

Mario's Bowling & Family Entertainment Palace (MBFEP) is hoping to entice more children to look at bowling as not just an entertaining past time, but as a possible means to furthering their education...

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The U.S. Embassy announces the 8th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Annual Jr. Essay Competition
The U.S. Embassy announces the 8th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Annual Jr. Essay Competition

January 08, 2014

The United States Embassy in Nassau, The Bahamas, is pleased to announce the launch of the 8th annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Essay contest...

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Pastor pays tuition for 11 students
Pastor pays tuition for 11 students

January 08, 2014

Being thy brother's keeper has taken on new meaning at the Church of God of Prophecy, Seven Hills, as Senior Pastor Bishop Clarence N. Williams recently walked into The Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute (BTVI)...

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Brick Squad Disaster Masters reign supreme

January 08, 2014

The Home School Leadership Academy (HSLA) Brick Squad Disaster Masters proved they are masters of Lego, as they captured the 2nd Bahamas First Lego Tournament...

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Committee head hits out at concerns over search for new COB president
Committee head hits out at concerns over search for new COB president

January 06, 2014

THE head of the College of the Bahamas' presidential search committee took exception to criticisms of the search for the institution's 10th president in 16 years...

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COB preparing university status master plan

December 20, 2013

The College of The Bahamas (COB) is preparing a "master plan", a crucial element as it continues on its path to attain university status...

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Alliea Campbell successfully completes Island School semester program
Alliea Campbell successfully completes Island School semester program

December 18, 2013

With Alliea Campbell's successful completion of the Fall 2013 Island School semester program in Eleuthera, the number of Bahamian high school graduates who have been gone through the course rose to 30...

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COB's Fall 2013 commencement class an historic group
COB's Fall 2013 commencement class an historic group

December 18, 2013

Before they were conferred with degrees, certificates and diplomas at the Fall 2013 Commencement Ceremony on Tuesday, more than 200 graduands of The College of The Bahamas were the guests of honor at a Baccalaureate Service held at Christ Church Cathedral on Monday night...

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Students share the spirit of Christmas

December 18, 2013

A group of sixth grade students from the Grand Bahama Academy of Seventh-day Adventists got into the spirit of the Christmas season early, by deciding to share their wealth with their brothers and sisters who are residents of the Grand Bahama Children's Home...

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