Back to high school on Brac

| 14/12/2008

(CNS): All Cayman Brac High School (CBHS) students will be returning to class on Monday for the last three days of term following the closure of the school on Friday in the wake of an act of vandalism. However, the two primary schools on the Brac will not open until the New Year, though primary students still have the option of attending the campus activities at the Creek facility.

“Despite severe vandalism to eight classrooms and equipment early Friday morning, the Cayman Brac High School is once again ready toaccept students for the final three days of term from Monday 15 December,” the Ministry said adding that all affected rooms have been cleaned and teachers and students may safely return to class.

Vandals appear to have entered the school sometime last Thursday night or Friday morning by tearing off louvered shutters before causing enough damage to shut down the school at the end of the first week that all students had returned following Hurricane Paloma. The act of vandalism, coming so close to the storm when the school suffered considerable damage, was a severe blow to the Brac community. The Minister for Education, Alden McLaughlin  said he was shocked and disappointed that the school could be the target of such an act of wanton vandalism.

“Destroying the school, at a time when the Cayman Brac community is trying to recover from the devastating blow it received from Hurricane Paloma is particularly heinous” he added. “It is my hope that whomever is responsible will be identified and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” he added.

So far there have been no details from the police about the progress of the investigation but as CNS reported on Friday (Vandals mash up Brac school) the police attended the scene and collected forensic evidence.

The ministry extended thanks to all the individuals and companies that helped to clean the school to get it ready for Monday morning.

Meanwhile, the Ministry said in a release that sufficient repairs have now been completed at West End Primary School to facilitate its reopening, but in light of the proximity to Christmas, West End Primary School, along with the other primary schools in Cayman Brac, will formally reopen in the New Year. For the remainder of the current term, the camp-based activities that have proved a successful interim measure for the past two weeks will continue.

Learning Community Leader for Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, Tammy Banks Dacosta, explained, “With significant assistance from the Department of Education Services, we have been able to help our students move through the healing process. In addition to receiving some education provision, primary age students have also been enjoying lunch and breakfast.”

With clean-up and construction crews working often at weekends at long into the evening, it is hoped that all schools will be ready by next week.

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