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Sep 28, 2022

Free Laptops for Excelsior Students from Ministry of Education

It’s one of four Belize City high schools that have been selected for the Education Upliftment Program dubbed Together We Rise. Students who attend the four institutions: Sadie Vernon, Excelsior, Maud Williams and Gwen Lizarraga high schools are given uniforms, education, lunch and other resources free of cost to them. Today, Excelsior was the first to receive free laptops and Chrome Books for students who do not have those electronic devices. News Five’s Marion Ali was there and filed this report.


Marion Ali, Reporting

Through close working relations with the Ministry of Diaspora Relations and Build Belize Incorporated, the Ministry of Education has been able to hand over fifty-four laptops and Chrome Books to Excelsior High School. They will be given to students who do not have gadgets of their own to study or complete their assignments.


Francis Fonseca

Francis Fonseca, Minister of Education

“We wanted to come here to Excelsior this morning to make sure that we send a very clear message to these young people – that they are important, that their education is important, that we believe in them, that we want to support them, and we want to equip them with the tools they need to be successful students.”


Excelsior, like the other three schools involved in the Ministry of Education’s Upliftment Program called Together We Rise, caters to students who come from poor socio-economic backgrounds, so prior to now; each student was given a laptop. But while new devices will be distributed to all one hundred and nine students again, the school’s Principal, Dawn Watters says today, the priority was given to the fifty-four whose first devices are no longer functional.


Dawn Watters

Dawn Watters, Principal, Excelsior High School

“For many of them, they don’t have an electronic device so the donation today has really helped our students. It has helped them to be current with their schoolwork. It has helped them to conduct research, and technology is being integrated in all areas of the curriculum so it allows linkages to happen across subject areas.”

Watters says that students have spent the past two years trying to keep up with their lessons with the use of manual school packages, so having a device will no doubt make the learning process that much more convenient.  Watters said that since the Ministry’s Together We Rise program was introduced this month, there has been an increase in student enrollment.


Dawn Watters

“When these students come to us we have the responsibility to try and reform them and provide them with the morals and the values necessary for them to become productive citizens, so it transfers really to safer communities because if we have these kids off the streets, enrolled in school, and give them a positive outlet to gain abilities, skills, values, morals, then that will give them an option to perhaps go and further their studies or be functional at employment.”


As for the program, Minister Fonseca said that by next year, the ministry should be able to make an assessment of its success and to tweak the areas that may need it. Marion Ali for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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