(ZIZ News) – Minister of Education, the Hon Shawn Richards said students of the Basseterre High School will not be returning to the campus this September and alternative accommodations have been arranged.
In a statement issued on Wednesday on ZIZ Television, Minister Richards said the staff and students will be housed at several locations.
The first formers and staff will be accommodated at the Warner Park Cricket Stadium.
The second formers will be at the Methodist School Room.
Third formers will be housed in an already constructed wooden building that will be moved from the grounds of Basseterre High to the parking lot of Washington Archibald High.
He assured that the building will be completely sanitized before the students move in.
The fourth formers will be accommodated at Washington Archibald High and the fifth formers will continue to use the spaces at the Premier Dental Building.
Children in learning support classes will be housed in spaces at the Zion Moravian Church Complex.
Minister Richards said reports from various agencies were inconclusive on the case of illnesses reported at Basseterre High so the government did not want to risk returning the staff and students to the campus.
“The Government of National Unity has decided that it would err on the side of caution. The health and wellbeing of students and staff of B.H.S. are of paramount importance to us. We will build a new school. It is not the intention of this government to put the health of these citizens of St. Kitts and Nevis at risk,” Minister Richards stated.
Additional staff will be deployed at B.H.S. to facilitate security and effective transitioning of teachers and students throughout the school day.
He said the accommodations for the first and second formers and the staff are temporary as long-term solutions are underway.
“This arrangement is only expected to last for the first term. Very shortly, construction will commence on buildings to comfortably and adequately accommodate these persons,” he explained.
He said the government and stakeholders have examined several options for temporary solutions and their associated costs, adding that plans are underway to construct dedicated classrooms in the future.