With COVID-19 protocols and restrictions still in place, many local institutions have been forced to come up with innovative ways to celebrate their school leavers.
On Friday, Sir John A. Cumber Primary School held a special virtual Year 6 school leaving ceremony titled ‘Aim High Amidst the Storm” which was broadcast live on YouTube.
The event was the first of its kind for the West Bay school.
Principal Jovanna Wright, in her address, said the Class of 2020 will always be remembered as “one of the most resilient cohorts that Sir John A. Cumber Primary School has ever produced”.
In a statement on the ceremony, Wright encouraged the students to remember three integral things in life: “1) Always believe in themselves; 2) We are in this together and will yield greater results when we work as a team; and 3) Education is the one gift that no one can ever take away – it is the ticket to success.”
More than 40 students received special awards for their academic achievements, including Honour Roll, Principal’s Honour Roll, Principal’s Award, and Academic Excellence in Reading, Writing, and Mathematics.
Students were also recognised for Perfect Attendance, Outstanding Citizenship, Consistent Effort, Excellence in Music, Excellence in Sports, and Exemplary Conduct.
The broadcast also featured video performances from students Zaijah Wright, Amie Ebanks and Peyton Tiofoli, among others.
The special ceremony also featured video messages from Year 6 teachers and photo slide shows of milestone events for the students.
Minister for Education Juliana O’Connor-Connolly also delivered a message to the school leavers in which she highlighted the importance of education as a means on nation-building.
“We must nation-build. Develop our young, bright minds. Challenge the average minds. Facilitate and augment the struggling mind, so that together we can and will have an educated country, and each of you can and must find your place in our Caymanian community and indeed the world if you so desire,” she said in her statement.
Acting Department of Education Services Director Tammy Hopkins also shared a congratulatory message in which she applauded students for their hard work specifically during the COVID 19 pandemic and commended parents and teachers for their support and cooperation.
Former student and West Bay resident Janelle Syms delivered the keynote address. She recently completed her Bachelor’s Degree in the United Kingdom.
She urged students to remember the “foundation of resilience, independence and determination that have been fostered. These will become very valuable allowing you to continue to succeed in a world where many things seem uncertain.”
On 12 June, members of the 86-student school-leaving cohort participated in the Drive-Through Awards Ceremony held in their honour at the school.
A video of the day’s events was also included in the virtual ceremony on Friday.
The video of the ceremony can be viewed here.