New student council at Sir John A. Cumber

Gina Peck and Lara Punte of Progressive Distributors with Sir John A. Cumber students.

Twenty-eight Sir John A. Cumber Primary School students in Years 1 to 6 were recently awarded special ties at an installation ceremony for the new student council.

The students will take on leadership roles in their classrooms along with other duties that support the school’s teaching staff and administration.

The student councilors represent the voice of their classmates, bringing suggestions to school staff, and are charged with showing leadership and support of the school’s positive behavior intervention strategy theme of “Be respectful, be responsible, be safe.”

The keynote speaker at the ceremony on Nov. 11 was Jake Bennett, who was the first elected president of the school’s student council in 2008. Many parents were in attendance in support of their children.

On Nov. 18, students in Year 6 got to try their hand at making a traditional clothing item at a session conducted by Chris Christian, Rose May Ebanks and Blonde Uzzle of Cayman Traditional Arts.

According to Mr. Christian, Cayman’s early settlers originally used cow hide to make rustic slippers they called wompers.

“To prevent the skin from rotting or decaying, they would soak it in seawater, or just salt it, then stretch it in the sun to dry,” he said.

When it was properly dried, the hide was used to make wompers and other items including hinges. In later years, old car tires were used to make the slippers.

New student representatives with guidance counselor Elysia Murray, Principal Paul Samuel and Deputy Principal Lorna Lumsden.
New student representatives with guidance counselor Elysia Murray, Principal Paul Samuel and Deputy Principal Lorna Lumsden.

“With a sharp knife, the oval shape design, traced by pencil, was carefully cut out and the holes chiseled out,” said Mr. Christian.

“Silver thatch leaves were then weaved through the holes, to use as straps. The final products were used to go ‘ground’ (to the farm), town or church.”

At the session, the students enjoyed making small versions of wompers out of car tires and silver thatch, and got to try on wompers that were brought in by Mr. Christian’s team.

On Nov. 25, Sir John A. Cumber Primary School students were the lucky recipients of a free breakfast courtesy of Progressive Distributors.

Each student at the school, which has a current enrollment of 570, received a breakfast of a juice carton, a box of granola bars and a sachet of oats.

“Progressive Distributors are proud to support the Cayman community, and they recognize the importance of eating a healthy breakfast every morning,” a press release states.

“Sadly, there are many children in Grand Cayman who go to school without receiving this essential first meal of the day.”

According to the press release, by purchasing any two Tropicana or Quaker products at Foster’s Food Fair IGA during September, participants had the opportunity to enter their details in a draw to win an Apple MacBook and choose a school to receive a free breakfast.

Contest winner and West Bay resident Hazel Nelson submitted her entry at Foster’s Food Fair Republix, and chose Sir John A. Cumber to get the breakfast.

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