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Jun 22, 2011

Awards for top performers at Primary School Examination

Close to seven thousand primary school children sat this year’s Primary School Examinations from schools around the country. While the results were poor in Math and English, the results were encouraging in social studies and science. Despite the overall dismal performance, the top twenty five students who excelled in the examination were honored today. Belize’s top performer, twelve year old Aliyah Marin was given the Michael and Jane Nembhard Award for Excellence and certificates of excellence in Math and English. News Five’s Andrea Polanco reports.

Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Today the Ministry of Education officially recognized and awarded the top performers at the national and district level in this year’s Primary School Examination. Although the overall P.S.E results were poor, for the top finishers there is reason to celebrate their hard work:

Aliyah Marin, 2011 Top PSE Student

Aliyah Marin

“Well I simply feel proud of myself because I worked hard for this. So I simply set a goal for myself and I reached for it and I got it.”

Andrea Polanco

“What would you say to primary school students across the country, when it comes to preparing for the P.S.E?”

Aliyah Marin

“Just work hard, study, if you can, you can do extra but you don’t really have to. Just do a lot of work on your own and do your best.”

Andrea Polanco

“Aliyah, can we look out for you at the CXC Awards Ceremony in the next four years?”

Aliyah Marin

“Of course you can I will be there, trust me.”

Josette McGann

Josette McGann, 2nd Place

“It feels really great, it’s a blessing it’s really a blessing.”

Andrea Polanco

“I know you got the top honors for the Social Studies. Did you expect this, what kind of work did you put in to get this top honors?”

Josette McGann

“Well I didn’t really expect it but before we went out to P.S.E my teacher told me yes I know you can get the hundred for Social Studies and I think that’s what inspired me to do well in Social Studies.”

Jordan Murillo, 3rd Place

Jordan Murillo

“I feel excited and proud of myself and my achievement.”

And fundamental to the students’ performance are their teachers, friends and primarily their families.

Marlene Marin

Marlene Marin, Aliyah’s mother

“I feel very proud and am very overwhelmed today. She has always been the type of child who you don’t really have to sit and push her to do her work. She is the one that’s she’s very independent, she does everything on her own to a great extent nuh. But I have been there to really guide her along the way.”

Dorett Dennyson: Josette’s Mother

Dorett Dennyson

“It’s a good feeling; it says that when you work hard and when you remain focused and consistent all things are possible.”

Andrea Polanco

“What does it feel like to be the parent of one of the top performers in the entire country of Belize in the P.S.E?”

Julian Murillo

Julian Murillo, Father of Jordan

“Well we’re very proud but I’d like to make sure that we recognize that it’s his achievement, he is the one who sat the exam, and he is the one who did very well. We expected him to do well because he is a very good student but obviously the outcome is something that we’re very elated to be enjoying at this point in time.”

With over half of almost seven thousand students performing below average, parents said that families can help to ensure the success of their children:

Dorett Dennyson

“I would say be there for your children, support them, and get involved in school. Know what they are doing, know who their teachers are, go to school always yuh know make sure that you check you check homework. Yuh know you’re just on top of things you don’t let go, if you let go anything could go wrong.”

Marlene Marin

“I would say to parents out there, work with their children, really work with their children. Even if you’re a working parent, I’m not a working parent I am a stay at home mom. Try to pay attention to the things that your children, what they are doing in school. Keep up with what’s happening in school, their daily work that they do.”

Kate Ramirez

But also shining through the poor statistics are Bernice York, the number one ranked school and Horizon Academy which is having its first graduating class this year:

Kate Ramirez, 5th Place

“Well I feel really excited because yuh know I prepared really hard for this exam. I studied and it’s good to know that you get rewarded for your hard work and dedication.”

Andrea Polanco

“What does this achievement mean for the school?”

Kate Ramirez

“This is a great accomplishment for all of us because we all worked hard as team; we all helped each other so it’s a great accomplishment. It’s also great to know that our school came in first place.”

Andrea Polanco

“What advice do you have for young students across the country of Belize who will be sitting the P.S.E next year?”

Kate Ramirez

“Well, to work hard, dedicate yourself, to work to the best of your abilities and strive for excellence.”

Alyssa Craig, 7th Place

Alyssa Craig

“I’m feeling really good about myself like I tried really hard for the P.S.E and I studied.”

Andrea Polanco

“What does this achievement mean for you and for Horizon Academy?”

Alyssa Craig

“Well this is the first graduating class of Horizon Academy so I’m feeling really proud of myself and my class for a hundred percent passes in P.S.E and I think this is a really great achievement for Horizon.”

Diane Maheia

Diane Maheia, Principal, Horizon Academy

“We are extremely proud, happy; we are so satisfied, more than satisfied with the performance of our students. We had only nine students in this first class, and they came to us from different places, from different backgrounds and we really believe that the work that we have done with them over the past two years has helped them to achieve possibly greater than they would have had they been in other schools or other places; so we are very proud of the work that these students have put in and we’re proud of our teachers as well.”

While the ceremony is cause for celebration, it also underscores that there is more work to be done:

Patrick Faber, Minister of Education & Youth

Patrick Faber

“I join with those who are congratulating the top performers this year, as we always do. They have done well and indeed they deserve every bit of that recognition that we give them today but in my presentation this morning I also tried to send the signal that indeed we need to be concerned about so many other students who are not doing so well according to the Primary School Examination which is an indicator of how our children are performing. I make the plea as I always do, to all stakeholders in education to do their part in helping us to fix these problems.”

The three top students were awarded laptops, joining the remaining top twenty five for book grants and certificates. Reporting for News Five, I am Andrea Polanco.

Other top students were awarded certificates of excellence in Math, Social Studies and English.

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6 Responses for “Awards for top performers at Primary School Examination”

  1. BZNinCALI says:

    Congratulations. Continue to work hard.

  2. Rod says:

    Under this administration the education of our youth continues to to tank we are indeed headed the way of Haiti worse gov. In the history of be lice we continue to go down in every faset of life this is the worse education minister in the history of belize and if you don’t believe it check it out education has never been as bad as it is now ever sad sad sad.

  3. ME says:

    Only ONE male made it in the tops it seems! Our Belizean males need to step up! Come on parents lets push our young males strive for the best and that education isnt uncool!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Elgin Martinez says:

    Why is it surprising that one male made it in the top when most of them are been recruited for Gang activities?

  5. ME says:

    Thats my point Elgin we need to be something bout as Belizeans because those males are the future fathers of our country!

  6. crazy says:

    The males have other priorities like killing and robbing people. Now thats funny!

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