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First, let me state that in writing this letter I wish to make a few suggestions that I believe would help stem the tide of the social and moral decadence that has become so pervasive in our country and has reached every level of civil society regardless of age, gender, social status.
There is an old Japanese proverb, which translates to the English as "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil". It has been my observation that the culture of gangsterism, oversexualization of our young people, and the rampant materialism in the modern Bahamas has manifested itself within this proverb. I believe that there is a direct link between mass media and its influence on the general public. One would just have to turn on the radio to one of the popular stations and listen, not to the music, but the ideas systematically repeated within the music, 24 hours a day, six days in the week. The ideas constantly repeated include: casual sex without any social or long-term responsibility; the glorifying of a criminal lifestyle; thoughtless consumerism; rapacious capitalism; poor dietary spending.
The cinemas are just as culpable in this effort; where one mass media outlet affects the general public on what it hears this media outlet affects it by what it sees. In fact, there is an adage that says "a picture says one thousand words". These moving pictures or images visually demonstrate ideas which may not be beneficial to a society which teaches social responsibility and moral restraint. Any perceptive watcher or listener has to wonder the long-term effects of these messages on a community.
If I am not mistaken, there are agencies that regulate mass media in this country - i.e, URCA and the Bahamas Christian Council. However, I truthfully do not think that their efforts have been impactful; considering the movies still being screened in our theaters and allowable music played over the airwaves.
On the other hand, there are people who would defend mass media abuse with claims of freedom of expression. However, this freedom should be reasonable and considering the outcome of its effect we have gone far beyond the scope of reasonableness.
I would like to make clear that I am not the "thought police" but I do know that some ideas resonate in the minds of the young and the uniformed. It is within the public interest of any country to fetter some of the expressions propagated through our mass media which negatively impact the collective consciousness of our society. I would humbly suggest that an independent investigation be done on the effects of commercial mass media on the psyche of Bahamian consumers.
Next, one should look at possible ways in using mass media to propagate positive messages. There is an immediate tendency to slip into an argument of mind control or brainwashing. However, we should resist this temptation. All mass media propagates a message, whether it's in buying a particular product or accepting a particular political agenda. In America, mass media has been used to create a specific culture for its own people to follow. Unfortunately, this culture has been globalized and imposed on people it may have been never intended for.
Thirdly, I would urge our government to institute legislation that would seek to prevent the proliferation of questionable media content (including cable, satellite, and the internet). I believe that through the law one can condition behavior.
Lastly, we should investigate other governments' mass media usage, outside of the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. The country of Nigeria uses the film industry known as Nollywood to promote family values laden with cultural themes. This is unlike the wanton violence, promiscuity, and drug abuse common in Western media programming. I understand that people have the right to make up their own minds; however, there are many persons within our society who find it difficult in differentiating entertainment from reality. They live out the pathologies of what they see and hear in media.
In conclusion, I would urge you who may have the power to help usher along the wheels of change to seriously consider these suggestions. We would render ourselves negligent if we idly stand by, receiving all the privileges of this country and ignoring all the obligations to which, as proud citizens, we are all responsible. God bless the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
- Cohen P. Davis
The Bahamas recorded its 109th homicide on Sunday, October 23. If you consider an average family size of 20 members, that's over 2,000 Bahamians whose lives are directly affected. The further spinoff effect on the existing population in my view is astronomical.
Jean Toomer said that, "Acceptance of prevailing standards often means we have no standards of our own."
We have become a society that now accepts the status quo. We are fashionable and no longer have any collective desire to practice good old fashioned morals. If we hold a free community event calling for peace and love as opposed to a reggae concert on the same night that costs $50, which event do you think will be the best attended?
We have become a society that gives more credence to citizens who engage in criminal behavior than to citizens who just want an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. Parents lust for that nice truck the neighbor is driving. They don't mind that their neighbor does not work and doesn't have a trust fund, but yet they want a vehicle of the same make and model. And they sometimes will do all sorts of things to achieve a particular end.
Parents look down at their other neighbor who drives a battered car or who may be catching the bus. This neighbor, though, goes to work every day and by all accounts is law abiding. They don't teach their children the values associated with working for what you want and that when you don't have something, you do without it.
We have become a society that allows our children to watch all types of movies, sleep out at nights and hang out with friends who have questionable motives. We allow our children's homework to go unchecked, we don't attend PTA meetings and when our children get in trouble, we utter the words, "Not my good child".
We have become a society that allows pastors to molest our children, have inappropriate sexual relationships with their members and remain in the pulpit. We have allowed all sorts of immoral and decaying behavior at the foot of our churches, but yet we sing "Praise the Lord" on Sundays.
We have become a society that shields suspected murderers from police. We don't believe in the old adage that if you commit the crime, you should serve the time. We don't encourage criminals to turn themselves in to police anymore. Rather, we ask them if they are all right and we tell them to be strong. We tell the criminals to be careful.
Are we going to continue to accept new standards and keep shifting our moral compass? Are we going to keep compromising our standards until there are no more standards left? Or are we going to say right is right and wrong is wrong and defend this principle no matter who may be offended?
We tolerated the illegal drug trade, illegal immigration, armed robberies and rape and now we are tolerating murder. We have become a complicit and tolerant society and now we are paying the price.
TAKING exception to an article printed in The Tribune last week, the Bahamas Christian Council vehemently denied its members watched any pornographic films while researching their position on broadcasting standards.
The article in question, published on Friday, January 6, said the council called for a ban on pornographic movies from Cable Bahamas' channel programming, "after watching 12 X-rated films from the home of a senior citizen."
However, the council said this suggestion misrepresents what actually took place, as its members only took note of the titles and descriptions, at no time watching any pornographic content.
In its response to the draft Code of Practice for Content Reg ...
- Genre : Thriller
- Rating : TBC - To Be Classified
After watching their best friend get murdered, a group of teens struggle to expose a local hero as the vicious killer and keep from becoming his next victims....
Kindly allow me the opportunity to tread where angels dread to tread on a matter of national security. Let me get right to the point. The Bahamas must not be politically naive to assume that the Chinese are here out of purely humanitarian or economic goodwill. I dare to suggest that the underlying, not ulterior, motive is military and neither humanitarian nor economic, and certainly not religious; though we can begin to look forward to an
ever surreptitious move to
introduce Chinese religion in our tertiary institutions of learning.
Let us face it, the Chinese do not need the Bahamian economy for the sustenance of theirs. The trade imbalance shows that. The Chinese could find many other more destitute countries to allocate humanitarian resources if it was all about Chinese altruism. It is all about North America - this we must know and it is this knowledge that must guide our Bahamian-Chinese policies and our apparent unfettered receiving of Chinese 'cookies'.
In the Little Mermaid, Ariel, the star-dazed teenager foolishly and selfishly assumed that Ursula the witch was interested in Ariel and Ariel's agenda, in Ariel's world. Ariel certainly suffered from delusions of self-grandeur. But Ursula was connivingly quick, at the critical moment, to enlighten Ariel that it was not she (Ariel) that Ursula was after but her father - King Triton (the bigger fish).
The allusion to this Disney movie is only referential and does not seek to brand any government. I read with humor in The Nassau Guardian recently the move of the government to "dramatically simplify(ing) visas for millions of Chinese tourists". The dye is being cast and the bait is being laid, not conspicuously, not overtly, but covertly and in clandestine manners under economic and humanitarian gestures. The Chinese are coming. And America is watching in politically, perhaps militarily, astute ways and is cautiously and wisely silent for now.
Nations of the world are watching, while yet receiving a Sino-like invasion of goodwill gestures, financial and social engagements from this 'atheistic' nation; this nation whose military and economic might is potentially frightening.
We must know that it is our inevitable destination that one day we will be caught in the middle of 'a something' between China and the United States of America. When, what and how high the stakes, will be our moment of epiphany. And how we choose could be our Waterloo. But know that one day the piper will demand payment and we will have to 'choose ye this day'.
- Alastair "Dr. B" Basden
A dog's bark has taken on a sinister meaning for residents in the Big Pond area. Most times it signals that some sort of criminal activity is taking place.
So when Orlando Sears heard a dog's bark yesterday afternoon, he knew that something was wrong.
And as it turned out, his neighbor's home was being broken into.
"It was like a movie," Sears said referring to yesterday's break-in at a residence on Tucker Road.
Sears said he was walking over to another neighbor's house shorly after noon when he noticed a man acting a little strange.
He said he went back into his house to observe the man.
Sears said he watched as the man walked past his neighbor & ...
MOVIE studio Universal Pictures and its new parent, cable TV giant Comcast Corp., will try giving film buffs a chance to watch a movie that's still in theatres from the comfort of their living rooms. But the price tag for a single movie could have consumers spitting out their popcorn: $60. The test involves "Tower Heist," a PG-13 rated comedy caper starring Eddie Murphy and Ben Stiller due out Nov. 4.
Can you imagine your life without the use of the internet or a cellphone? Probably not! Emails and other electronic devices have become such critical vehicles for communicating and doing business, that it is hard to imagine how we ever lived without them. Unfortunately, as great as the Internet and other electronic devices may be, they have also become vehicles for scams, viruses and more recently in the workplace, a tool used by employees to engage in character assassination of each other via social networks, online harassment and cyberstalking.
Last week I sat in horror and listened as one of my international clients relayed a story that was so mind blowing, I felt like I was watching a cloak-and-dagger espionage movie! Obviously the story is too long to relay in this forum, but here is the abridged version. My client was a victim of email spoofing! Exactly! I didn't know what is was either but apparently email spoofing "is the forgery of an email header so that the message appears to have originated from someone or somewhere other than the actual source." In other words someone could send an email pretending to be you, and the receiver would have no reason to believe that it was not you, because the sender would be using your email address! Yep it could happen! Needless to say my client was in the hot seat and almost lost her job when she was confronted by the president of the company for supposedly sending mass emails to the entire staff highlighting the fact that he (the president) was "clueless, incompetent, lacked vision and was running the company into the ground." Luckily for my client, someone in the information technology department decided to run a trace on the Internet Protocol (IP) address of the email and was able to track it to its real sender - a disgruntled employee who was recently demoted - go figure!
Having been a victim of online harassment and cyberstalking myself recently, (and for those of you who may not know what cyberstalking is, ladies and gentlemen "cyberstalking is the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass an individual, a group of individuals, or an organization. It may include false accusations, monitoring, making threats, identity theft, damage to data or equipment, the solicitation of minors for sex, or gathering information in order to harass. The definition of 'harassment' must meet the criterion that a reasonable person, in possession of the same information, would regard it as sufficient to cause another reasonable person distress." Wikipedia) I knew exactly what my client was going through.
So this week I interviewed Royal Bahamas Police Force Cyber Crimes guru, Sergeant Dale Strachan, to shed some light on this growing problem. Here is what he had to say:
Question: Have you seen a rise in cyber crimes in The Bahamas, for example on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks?
Answer: Yes. We have seen a rise in cyber crime in the following areas:
i. Threats of harm or death;
ii. Emailing of slanderous images or comments;
iii. Email hacking;
iv. A crime called phishing (where a website is created to look like the original, but it is actually a fraud). This fake site is use to gather personal information from unsuspecting persons to defraud them of money. Complaints are mainly from foreign victims reporting that a financial institution in The Bahamas posted the site.
Question: Why do you believe we are experiencing such a spike in cyber crimes? What seem to be the motive(s) of the perpetrators?
Answer: The fact that the perpetrator thinks his/her identity will remain anonymous seems to be the driving force. Ultimately the perpetrator's intent is to embarrass the victim or put him or her in fear.
Question: Is sending malicious or defamatory emails a crime in The Bahamas? Define malicious, define defamatory.
Answer: Yes both are crimes. Malicious is defined as nasty, hateful, mean, wicked, cruel emails continually being sent to the annoyance of the receiver. Also referred to as annoying email, malicious emails are similar to a common offence known as annoying telephone calls. We can add that emails threatening or implying harm or death are also an offence and amount to threats of harm or threats of death. Defamatory is defined as slanderous, derogatory emails that are distributed to others and used as a vehicle to attack a person's character.
Question: What recourse does the receiver of malicious or defamatory emails have? Can they seek police help?
Answer: Depending on the offence committed, victims have the following recourse:
o Police action can be taken;
o You can have the person bond over to keep the peace;
o You can take civil action in a court or file a lawsuit;
o You can report the email address of the sender to the hosting company as abuse and it will be removed.
Question: How can you track the sender of a malicious email?
Answer: The sender is tracked by the header information (contained in the original email.)
Question: What suggestions can you give persons to safeguard their email accounts?
Answer: Many persons in The Bahamas reported that their email accounts were hacked. Our investigation proved that the following methods were used to obtain their personal information:
o Individuals received a "pop up" asking them to reset their password information. The "pop up" claimed that if the password was not reset that the individual would loose his/her account. Once the password is reset hackers have full access to your account.
o Individuals received a "pop up" asking for personal information, specifically the question that was used when you created your account. Once you answer these questions you give hackers access to your account
o Using a public computer: When you "log off" of a public computer, persons can come after you, run password recovery software and extract your information.
o Using computers at a friend's house or the work place, to access you email account: Again the password can be extracted using recovery software. In the workplace many companies have software installed on computers that monitor employee action online. This software also captures password information.
o Your wireless network: When you put a password on a website wirelessly, anyone with access to your network also has access to all of the computers on that network and they can "sniff" traffic to capture your password.
o Be aware of putting other people's jump drives in your computer. These jump drives may contain programs that auto run with one purpose - to extract all password information that might reside on you computer.
o Do not accept the browser's suggestion to save a password.
o Set the cache on your browser to delete on exit.
Stacia Williams offers keynotes, workshops and personal coaching on a wide range of: Personal Branding, Image Management, Customer Service, Leadership, Business Etiquette & International Protocol Topics. You can contact Stacia Williams at 325-5992 or email Stacia@totalimagemanagement.com or visit staciawilliamsblog.com.
Director of the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (NAGB) Amanda Coulson answers this week's 20 Questions from Guardian Arts&Culture.
1. What's been your most inspirational moment in the last five years?
The One Family tribute to Jackson Burnside on Bay Street, Boxing Day Junkanoo 2011, without a doubt. It was the first time I saw the topic of "art" addressed directly in the costumes, with dancing portraits, palettes, paintbrushes... It was amazing! All the things dear to Jackson's heart brought to life again in this our ultimate Bahamian art form... it made me think about what my mission was here, in returning home. That moment made me realize how much the gallery had to open up its doors so much wider to the community. On the opening night of our first show, including some of those costumes, we had a rush out and I was intensely moved to see people from all walks of life celebrating together and going into the gallery as if it was their own.
2. What's your least favorite piece of artwork?
Anything shallow or facile, whether it's all craft and no concept or all concept and no craft. Great art - or even merely good art - requires not only technique but also deep thought and a meaningful goal.
3. What's your favorite period of art history?
Aside from the present moment, which is the most exciting and vital, it would have to be 16th century Venetian painting, the masters such as Giorgone, Mantegna, Titan, Tintoretto and Veronese. Although I do have a soft spot for Caravaggio as well, who was more from the Roman school (and I'd like to point out that they were all considered extremely radical and shocking in their time!)
4. What are your top 5 movies of all time?
Antonioni's "Zabriskie Point", of course! Just kidding... If time allows I do love going to the movies and I can enjoy a big silver screen epic as much as an independent production or an animation flick with my family. So, it really could be anything from "Apocalypse Now" to "Lord of the Rings" to "Juno" to "Shrek", depending on my state of mind. My top Bahamian movie is "Children of God" by Kareem Mortimer.
5. Coffee or tea?
Tea in the UK and coffee in Italy. Here I'd rather have a fresh ginger lemonade (or a Switcha!). Always go for what the locals do best!
6. What book are you reading now?
"The World Without Us" by Alan Weisman. It's a book that elucidates how fast nature would take over again if humans would cease to exist, but also explains what can never be reborn, thanks to the destruction we have wrought on our planet. It's a book that gives you great respect for Mother Nature. I'm also flipping through "Caribbean: Crossroads of the World" an exhibition catalogue from a show that was in NY across three museums. There is a copy in our library if anyone from the public wants to come and read it too!
7. What project are you working on now?
I am working on several ... "The John Beadle Project", which opens on April 25 at the NAGB, as well as "Master Artists of The Bahamas", a traveling exhibit that was in Iowa and Florida, opening the same night. Since we plan our calendar though a few years in advance I am already researching the Brent Malone Retrospective we hope to have at the end of 2014; "40 years of Bahamian Painting" for the 40th this summer... the list really goes on and on...
8. What's the last show that surprised you?
A Felix Gonzales-Torres retrospective in Frankfurt a couple of years ago. He was a Cuban-American contemporary artist that died in 1996 in Miami from AIDS-related complications. His practice was very conceptual and, first of all, I thought I knew the work so well that I would be bored by another retrospective and, secondly, I thought it was fairly straightforward, a bit of a one-trick pony. This show, however, was curated by another contemporary artist and choreographer and he completely revitalized the work and made it so relevant and powerful. I took my kids to the show and they completely engaged with these very deep, very adult themes of love and loss, of our singularity but also how we are part of a greater whole. It was pretty amazing.
9. Saxons, One Family, Valley Boys or Roots?
10. If you had to be stranded on one Family Island which one would it be?
Eleuthera. It's where both my family hail from originally and where my husband proposed to me.
11. What's the most memorable artwork you've ever seen?
I get to list five movies and one artwork? Not fair! Picasso's "Guernica" in Madrid, which I was able to see at night with no other people in the gallery at the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid, was extremely memorable; it's one of the few overly-reproduced artworks that is not a disappointment in the flesh. The Rothko Chapel in Houston made me really understand how abstract art could connect you to the infinite and I found that a very moving, spiritual experience. Watching Christian Marclay's 24-hour video "Clock"; the full room of Monet's water-lilies at the Orangerie in Paris; Titian's "The Flaying of Marsyas"... sorry I need a top 100!
12. Which artist do you have a secret crush on?
Well, it wouldn't be much of a secret if I shared it in the paper now, would it? But to ease everyone's imagination let's say: Giotto!
13. If you could have lunch with anyone who would it be?
It would be my husband, who I do not see alone often enough. But if not him, it would be one of four great women: Jane Austen, Florence Nightingale, Tina Fey or my mother, who passed when our first daughter was born. As a mother myself now, I find I have a lot of things to apologize for!
14. Who do you think is the most important Bahamian in the country's history?
Always the next baby to be born. We are a country with a longer future than a history and we mustn't forget that.
15. Who is your favorite living artist?
Whoever the last one was to really completely surprise me. That can happen anywhere and by anybody. It can happen at the NE6, at the MoMa or in the studio of an (as yet) unknown artist. To keep the mind open is the true challenge.
16. Sunrise or Sunset?
The golden rays of the late afternoon sun until it drops over the horizon have always been my favorite hours and colors of the day.
17. What role does the artist have in society?
Artists are visionaries and inquisitors. They have to ask difficult questions, form ideas and create images which are ahead of their times. Good art will be understood and proven by future generations and very seldom appreciated by the present.
18. What's your most embarrassing moment?
Asking my husband (who is a diehard romantic to my hardheaded realist), really sarcastically, "What? Are you going to propose or something now?" right before he actually did propose. The fact that he still did is a testament to his patience with me.
19. What wouldn't you do without?
20. What's your definition of beauty?
A smile after a moment of despair, the sparkle in the eyes of enlightenment, a gentle touch in a moment of need, a single note of love struck in the right chord. I think we are often too caught up in traditional notions of physical beauty to see the inherent beauty of a gesture or a spirit. Confucius said: "Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it."
To most parents all summer schools are the same -- but that was not the case for parents whose children attended the Forward and Onward to College and Upward to Success (FOCUS) academic supplementary program Summer SLAM (Summer Student Learning and Achievement Mania). The Lyford Cay Foundation sponsored year-round project-based summer camp engaged the 70 student participants in academics by getting them to participate in daily activities that ranged from watching movies, viewing powerpoints on scientists and inventors, writing creatively and factually and exploring the power of group work and team effort.
For many students the unconventional summer camp encouraged them to not only see summer as a time to do more than laze around, but get a jumpstart on their schoolwork as well as ignite a new love for academics.
Because of his participation in the FOCUS Summer SLAM program, 10-year-old Teran Cash's lukewarm feelings about school has changed. The Mabel Walker Primary School student said he is now more excited to learn new things, and about school. The atypical academic summer experience has given Cash the drive to learn new things, and challenge himself to do better in his studies.
"I never had so much fun learning new things before I came to FOCUS," said the first year student. "The program is really nice and it teaches me things I would have never learned in school normally. I think being in the program will give me an advantage over other students who aren't in it. This is a really different kind of summer school and it makes learning fun. I'm really excited for school to start now because I will be ready," he said.
Program has layers
There is another layer to this student friendly program. It is also designed to assist students in the long run so they can further their academic success. After all, every student imagines going to college, fulfilling their dreams and living the life they set their minds to. But with the growing cost of attaining a higher level education such dreams seem almost unattainable and many students simply give up.
Despite the challenges, 10-year-old Margo Scarlett, a student at Oakes Field Primary knows that collegiate success can be attainable as long as she works hard for it. Through
"I like the program because I am learning a lot and my teachers said that I will get a scholarship one day if I do well," said Scarlett of the unique opportunity that sets a foundation for a bright academic future for the students who participate in the nine-year program. "That will be great for my parents so they don't have to worry about it. I like that the camp encourages us to do things together and I'm learning responsibility and things like that. It's also great that I know I will be able to do something great one day without any questions."
FOCUS is a free academic development and enrichment program aimed at transforming the lives of its participants. For teachers, it is an opportunity to be a part of an exciting process. The program provides academic support in a wide range of educational activities, counseling and mentoring to talented, but under-resourced public school students in the fifth to twelfth grades who are
performing at an average or above-average level.
Although it is structured similarly to many summer programs, facilitators stress that FOCUS is not remedial support or a day camp. They say there are many summer programs in New Providence that provide fun activities for children, but few that are solely academics based. But the most impressive aspect of the program is that beyond the fast-paced summer program it also provides ongoing monitoring and assistance throughout the school year.
Preparing them for college
Reaching out to underprivileged children and preparing them mentally and academically to get into good colleges with the promise of scholarships determined on the extent of their hard work is the key to this Lyford Cay sponsored program. For many of the children in the program the chances of getting into college are slim and for others, just getting past the typical primary school class is a challenge, so the program aims to not only teach students everyday things they need for class, but to also push them to see themselves as bigger than their environment and to excel beyond their dreams.
"We try to accomplish this annually by reaching students where they are academically and push them to learn even more through a fun project based curriculum and teach them how to be responsible in the process of each other's learning," said program director, Felicity Humblestone.
"This is more than a summer camp or after school program. We want to reach out to students holistically which is why our lessons are not typically just straightforward Math and English. We incorporate our planned summer project -- inventing makeshift instruments that can be used in a symphony into the subject lessons so they can see how things connect and start thinking more creatively."
Camp teachers and mentors give students creative history lessons to introduce them to the concept of inventions, learn about inventors and other applicable ideas they would need to make the project come to life. They also did music lessons to get them used to instruments and what models they could base the results of their project on. To get students focused in English they participated in numerous activities from writing plays or stories about inventors, inventions or musical ideas they come up with. Math was also creatively incorporated by having students do problems based on what they learned. They are focused on their project but get all their core subjects packed into one day.
Humblestone said if the program goes the way it should, students should not feel average in a classroom setting. She said they should be able to have a fun and easy-going experience that they can utilize in their future scholastic encounters. As they get older and enter high school, the program adjusts to students' needs and is more college focused to prepare them for tertiary level work.
The academic enrichment program targets students in the northwestern district of public schools and hosts an intense summer program for six weeks from the beginning of July to mid-August. To keep students a step ahead after the school bell tolls there are 15 Saturdays of academic support planned per school semester. Forty students were accepted into the program this year to join the 30 students that were already enrolled.
"We really want to get students to think bigger and do better in their every day work. We want them to be more creative thinkers and have the right mindset to continue to excel," said Humblestone. "It is important for us to start working with students as young as those in grade four because at this point in the pipeline we can work to influence them to be on the right track academically and assist them in problem areas early enough so their ability to do well later down the line is not affected."
Kenny Hall, a first-year student in the program, said the experience he had ignited his imagination about his future. The Woodcock Primary student said he now feels that growing up to be a law enforcement officer is a possibility for him and hopes the program will help him to work hard to attain his goal.
"I don't want to be just any police officer or Defence Force officer. I want to be a smart one so I can raise [through the ranks]," said the nine-year-old. "I know that I have to study really hard and work even harder. So it's good that I will have people who can help me to do well in my schoolwork and teach me new things. I want to be more creative so I'm really happy to be in the program."
Students eligible to apply to be a part of the FOCUS program have to be in the fourth grade in one of the northwestern district of schools which include Oakes Field Primary, T.G. Glover Primary, Woodcock Primary, Mabel Walker Primary, Stephen Dillet Primary, Albury Sayle Primary and Naomi Blatch Primary. They must get recommendations from their teachers as well as have their parents attend an information seminar on the program and give their approval. An application form can be filled out by parent and student. It should also be accompanied by an essay on why they want to be in the program.