Fifty schools across the island received computers, on May 8, courtesy of the Bank of Nova Scotia’s charitable arm, Scotia Foundation. The institutions comprised a mix of basic, primary and all age and Junior high schools. Speaking at a ceremony to mark the donation, held at the Scotia Centre in downtown Kingston, Minister of Education, Rev. the Hon. Ronald Thwaites, commended the Foundation for its continued support of the education sector.
“When a major partner like Scotia bank decides to help in this way, not only is it very appropriate, because of their islandwide reach, but they are helping to build up humanity, our people, our children, and give them all the new competencies and skills they need,” he said. Rev. Thwaites called on the schools to make full use of the computers, expressing the hope that members of the wider community will also benefit from access to the machines.
The 50 schools will receive post-installation support and training, to ensure optimal use of the new computers. Executive Director, Scotia Foundation, Joylene Griffiths-Irving, said the donations to the 50 schools are in keeping with Jamaica’s 50th anniversary celebrations. “For a number of years the bank has been making annual presentations of computers to schools. Each year the number of requests increases, and so this year, in keeping with Jamaica 50, we decided we would select 50 institutions,” she told JIS News.
She informed that the Foundation donated 113 computers in total, with the Alpha Primary School receiving not only 13 computers, but also a computer lab in recognition of the school’s 120th anniversary celebrations. “The Foundation focuses on health and education and we felt that the provision of computers will make a big impact in the schools, because it is the way that the children will have access to information,” she said.