SINT MAARTEN (POND ISLAND) - On Monday, February 22nd, the Director of the National Recovery Bureau (NRPB) Claret Connor, the Honorable Minister in charge of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport (ECYS), drs. Rodolphe Samuel and the Director of Windward Roads Infrastructure (WWRI), Pierre Montesant, signed the school repair program agreement.
The document, which now paves the way for repairs to commence at three of the island’s schools damaged during the passage of hurricane Irma on Wednesday, September 6th, 2017, took place Monday afternoon at the Government Building on Pond Island. The three schools are Leonald Conner School, Sr. Regina School and St. Joseph School. Under the World Bank Trust Fund, nineteen schools have been identified for repair works.
The repairs agreement document outlines the obligations and responsibilities of the works that is to be executed by Windward Roads.
Representatives of Ministry- ECYS together with Ministry of VROMI and the project team at NRPB were present on Monday to witness the signing.
“I would like to say thank you to both the team of NRBP and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport for this part of the journey,” the Minister of ECYS, drs. Samuel said, adding that I know it is not easy and while I am signing this document, I am definitely thinking about the other schools that also need to be repaired.
Minister Samuel also signed as a witness, the works contract between NRPB and the main contractor, Windward Roads for the rehabilitation of the schools. This document was officially inked by the Director of the National Programme Bureau (NRPB), Claret Connor and the Director of Windward Roads Infrastructure (WWRI), Pierre Montesant.
“This brings us to the first step of steps to come. This is for the first three schools, as we work towards progressing to the list of schools that is to be repaired,” the Director of NRPB Connor noted. He further added that they are looking forward to quality work to be executed in a timely manner and those children that use the schools will have a facility that they will be all proud of.
“The School Repairs activity, as part of the Emergency Recovery Project 1, focuses on ensuring that schools are watertight, more hurricane resilient and safe to use under regular conditions. The scope of works will include mold and asbestos assessment and removal/ remediation, roof repairs, fencing, electrical work, plumbing, replacing of broken windows and doors, and the installation of hurricane shutters. Should any structural issues be found during inspections or works, these will also be included to ensure a safe school environment,” NRPB said in a released statement on February 8th.
Leonald Conner School management team will continue to communicate with parents/guardians on the school relocation plans. In addition, an engagement session will be organized by NRPB to connect virtually with the teachers, parents and guardians to share information of the repairs works at the school and allow questions and concerns from parents to be addressed.
Finally,” I want to say Thank you to the Management, support staff, teachers, parents/guardians and students l for their patience and understanding during the long process of finally reaching this goal.”
We look forward for the repair works to start and that doors to be opened once again, welcoming all students, teachers and management back to the property in the very near future.