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May 7, 2014

Ladyville Tech wins High School Innovation Challenge

A High School Innovation Challenge was held today as part of activities of education Week. High school teams from throughout the country were challenged to come up with an innovative concept to manage waste. It came down to the wire among ten teams today; but there was one high school that impressed the panel of judges because it has decided to eliminate waste by going paperless. Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Ladyville Technical High wins the High School Innovation Challenge….The five-member team along with its international mentor and teacher was ecstatic that their innovative idea won the competition.


Ginna Barnett, Student, Ladyville Technical High School

Ginna Barnett

“So many people were talking about reduce, reuse the waste. So we were like why reduce and recycle the waste when we can just eliminate them? So that is what we came up with because we knew that anyone would come up there and talk about reduce and reuse the waste, when we could do something unique and just eliminate them.  We intend to start at school first because that is where we spend most of our time, at the school. So we will start at the school by using electronics instead of paper.”


Waste… it is a perennial problem within the city and ten high schools participated in this year’s competition; it saw them presenting on the issue of waste management. After months of brainstorming and several days of workshops with Peace Work and PricewaterhouseCoopers, as well as the Ministry of Education, the students had to create and design presentations for a panel of judges.


Lia Flur

Lia Flur, Corporate Program Director, Peace Work

“We normally run financial literacy camps in the summer, in July, in primary and secondary schools, but we decided to expand and really hone in on some key skills from those trainings and into a May program that includes the High School Innovation Challenge. Starting in early January, we started meeting with principals and teachers and city council and business leaders on some of the key social issues that Belize youths face today. One of the top issues that came up was waste management and so we went with that. Ten high schools had their own in-school competitions. So they had anywhere between three to five themes; they had their own time to research the solution, come up with an executive summary and a presentation on April fourth and the winners of their in-school competitions then came to the finals here at the ITVET for the past couple of days. So starting on Monday, they had all day Monday and Tuesday to meet with two PwC volunteers, one Belizean business leader and a teacher/mentor from their school.”


As it currently stands, forty-five percent of the revenues generated at the Belize City Council is paid out for sanitation and it is a practice that Mayor Darrell Bradley says is unsustainable. Today, Bradley addressed the gathering saying that the presentations showed that the problem needs to be dealt with through partnership with other organizations.


Darrell Bradley

Darrell Bradley, Belize City Mayor

“I heard many different, creative, innovative ideas. I heard things related to partnership; I heard things related to increase legislation and enforcement; I heard thing related to government action, individual activities, school and community projects. I heard things about family and recycling. I heard things about businesses getting more involved, public awareness campaigns, competitions, and radio addressed. And I heard what was really the product of tremendous work. And when I was sitting there, one thing struck me in all of the presentations—no matter how creative and innovative they are—that the solution to our sanitation problem is not one thing. It is not housed in one organization or one institution. It will take the brain-thrust of all of our people especially our young people.”


Duane Moody

“You guys won and apart from cash, you won a tablet as well. Tell us about how it feels to have won.”


Ginna Barnett

“Well it feels very good cause I always wanted one, and we need one right now because we have a pilot at school and we use electronics for math. And I was asking my mom for one; my birthday just went.”


All team members of Ladyville Technical High School received two hundred and fifty dollars along with a tablet and a printer for the school. Second place went to EP Yorke High School and third place was Anglican Cathedral College. Duane Moody 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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