Espoir's Pilot Programs

Friday, February 22, 2013 | Comments (0)
Every idea and program in life must be tested, and it's no different at Espoir. In 2012 we travelled to Haiti and Jamaica to learn more about the needs of students and locate potential after-school sites.


Our 2012 pilot program was launched in Haiti in three different schools across the country. Ecole Adventist Jerusalem in Thomassique, Ecole National Toussaint Louverture de Palmiste-Bas also in Thomassique and Ecole Mix Don de Dieu in Petite Riviere de Bayonnais were hand selected by Espoir.

80 students will participate in the after school program at each location, getting the help they need in math, science and reading. In addition, the children received their daily exercise, choosing from activities as soccer and basketball at the end of the academic day.

Espoir plans to house a vocational center of 40 students and two teachers next to the schools where they will learn the art of making clothes. 

In May 2012 Espoir made a trip to Jamaica and selected the the following schools to participate in the after-school program: Annoto Bay High School, Waterford Primary, Bridgeport Primary, St Richards Primary and Brinkley Primary. Another potential site will be Annoto Bay High School

Waterford Primary
In a meeting with the school's vice principal, Mr. Courtney Lewis, the objectives and ideals of our after-school program were readily embraced. According to Mr. Lewis, a program such as Espoir would definitely improve the lives of students at the Waterford Primary School, who are struggling academically and otherwise.Located in the low income community of Waterford, Portmore, St Catherine, the school has a population of approximately seven hundred (700) students. Mr Lewis also outlined other needs of the institution, which caters to students in the 7 - 12 age group. These include white boards for classrooms, partitions and a school bus.

The principal of the school is Mr. Rohan Walker. 

Bridgeport Primary
This institution is home to students who fall in the low to middle income bracket and is located in a middle class community in Portmore, which is the largest community in the entire Caribbean.

The school population stands at 1145 with a teaching staff of 35. The teacher/pupil ratio is 1:45. Headmistress of the school is Mrs. Lewis. St. Richards Primary School
Located on Red Hills Road in the parish of St Andrew, St. Richards Primary, despite enjoying a tradition of academic excellence, has numerous challenges.

The school is located in a politically volatile area and many of the students live in the violence-prone lanes that lead off this main road. Students from these areas tend to perform at less acceptable levels when compared to their peers at the same school who are from more affluent backgrounds. St Richards caters to both the extremely poor and the extremely rich.

The first visit to the school yielded pictures only because it was Teachers' Day and the staff had left early for a function. The second day a meeting was held with the vice principal, Mrs. Kathleen Barnett.
Mrs. Barnett expressed her enthusiasm to the Espoir’s Programme and has already identified eleven students who will be required to repeat Grade 1 in September 2012, as prime candidates for Espoir.
The school has a population of nine hundred and seventy (970) students and caters to students from Grades 1 through to 6. There are 30 teachers on staff.

Headmistress of the school is Mrs. Jacqueline Williams. 

Brinkley Primary School
Principal of the school is Ms. Vivilyn Powell. The school has 700 students and 25 teachers and 80 students were selected to participate in the Espoir’s after-school program. The school welcomed Espoir and looking forward to working with the organization to make a difference in the lives of students.

Espoir will open its six sites in Jamaica in September 2013. We plan to service 80 students per school. After-school programs will start at 1:00pm to 5:00pm Monday through Friday. Qualified teachers will be hired from the schools and surrounding communities. 
Annoto Bay High School
Located in the rural parish of St Mary, Jamaica, Annotto Bay High School serves the parishes of St Ann, Kingston and St Mary. Now in its 11th year of operations, the secondary level school caters to students in the 12 - 17 age group. One of eight high schools in the parish, Annotto Bay is not the first, second or third choice for primary students sitting the annual GSAT placement test (which gets them into secondary school). Therefore, as Vice Principal, Mrs. Patricia Jones explained, the students at that institution are third and fourth tier, "After the Ministry (of Education) has creamed off those at the top and then those below that, then those that are left are sent to us". 

Despite this challenge, however, Annoto Bay High has risen to the occasion and offers a total of twenty-five (25) subjects at the CSEC level. Annotto Bay High can boast of 100 per cent passes at CSEC in subjects such as Agricultural Science, Food & Nutrition; Information Technology (90%) and Social Studies (80%). Not so impressive, however, are the passes in English Language and Mathematics, which remain in the region of 40% for each subject. 

Mrs Jones welcomed the proposal from Espoir International Youth Program and is looking forward to her school being a part of this enrichment program, which she pointed out must have the blessings of the Ministry of Education in order for her institution to be a participant. She reiterated that her students can benefit richly from Espoir and expressed her total satisfaction that Annotto Bay was chosen as part of the pilot project, as such projects are usually handed to schools which are centrally located in the capital, Kingston and its neighbour, St Andrew. 

The Student Population is 908, and the school services grades 7 - 11. The Principal is Mr Michael Leigh.

View photographs below