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Businesses need to enforce policies like Pier Park

Principal Sandy Underhill

Principal of Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) Sandy Underhill has called on businesses to emulate the Tortola Pier Park by enforcing policies to curb public displays of student indiscipline.

She also wants parents to be more responsible where their children are concerned.

Underhill’s comments come at a time when ESHS students have been involved in a series of public fights and unruly behaviour.

Their behaviour has been affecting local businesses such as TICO, RiteWay, Island Paints and Island Services, which are all located in the vicinity of the temporary ESHS facility in Pasea Estate.

“They (the businesses) are not happy,” Underhill said.

“Ideally this is not a location that was designed for a school of this magnitude. When we came here we did not expect to be met with all these challenges, and the responses by the community which they are all understandable.”

However, Underhill said the school cannot be solely responsible for student unruliness.

“It is a threefold responsibility. Yes, the school has a responsibility to go out and monitor. But the businesses also have policies in place that they need to enforce from day one. You cannot shift the burden back to the school; the parents have a responsibility, and everybody needs to work together.”

Fights are inevitable 

The ESHS principal said fights are inevitable with a student population that exceeds 1,000.

“Because of the size of the school, fights are going to happen. We don’t want them to happen but fights are going to happen,” she reasoned.

Underhill also said it is challenging to police students consistently since the school is operating on two shifts.

The early shift ends at midday while the second shift begins at 1pm and ends at 5pm.

“We don’t have time to run down and police people children at 12pm. But if people cared and showed gratitude for the hard work that you did, they would come and pick up their children at 12pm and make sure that they weren’t getting into fights. Or put something in place to ensure that your children weren’t being a nuisance to everybody else,” the principal reasoned.

There’s good news happening too

In the meantime, Underhill said the school continues to shine academically and otherwise.

“Everybody looks at it like [fights] are the only things that happens at ESHS and that is far from the truth. I think our public is misled by what goes on in school,” she said.

“Nobody is sitting down to talk about or to have a headline news that in nine days we built a school with 27 classrooms. Or we are running a school with two shifts, which never happened in the history of the Virgin Islands with one administration working from 7am to 7pm.”

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12 Comments

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  1. Ah ha says:

    We are fixing our prison but not our schools

  2. Albion says:

    Do we know how long it will be before the main building at ESHS will be repaired and the children can go back?

  3. Haha says:

    Dem waiting on voluntary workers !!!

  4. Innocent says:

    Will there be an honor roll program this year? That would be a great way of highlighting the positives of the school and rewarding those who did well last year.

  5. oh yeah boy says:

    One of the reason why some businesses will not implement such policies is because of the spending power the children represent. When they started keeping the children on campus during lunch time many businesses suffered. Two businesses that are happy they came are RTW and Sports Club. They might be a nuisance sometimes but they help pay the bills big time.

    • Lilly! says:

      In essence they should be allowed to run wild and cause havoc because they “help pay the bills big time”. Those hanging outside RTW stores drinking dollar beers are also helping to pay the bills. I am a frequent traveler and nowhere have I seen this type of behavior. It is so distasteful. I hate going to some stores because of this, as it makes me uncomfortable.

  6. first says:

    The pier park needs to enforce it’s own policy and collect those who are not paying rent for the stalls that they’re occupying

  7. ?? says:

    Suggestion. Have the Upper School classes in the morning starting a little earlier,since they are better behaved and the Lower School in the afternoon. Maybe 12.30-4.30pm.
    The Lower school students won’t have time to loiter around town all day.

    Rite Way you are selling food. Set up a food stall on the outside in some one of the parking lots for the children to purchase their lunch and make it clear that they should not go into the store at lunch time.
    Might alleviate some of the problem

  8. Concerned islander says:

    Ms.Underhill school children were not this unruly under the leadership of Mr. Stoutt. No further comments needed read between the lines.

    • @Concerned islander says:

      What you wrote shows your mentality and ignorance. I am not saying Mr. Stoutt was not a good principal but I seem to recall students attacking him at some point. Ms. Underhill is doing the best she can with the rude, disrespectful and unruly children the parents are raising or rather, not raising. If you want to blame anyone, start with the parents. And while you’re at it, check yourself.

  9. Blah says:

    You Sandy..is a c—–..p– leader…Police..coward…gov coward..parents..wutless coward…shittu society in general…you know..you gonna burn sym ppl to make change greedy coward buisness..f the money…you werent making that money before the s##$ bag kids were down that side..this is need correcting.Its not normal for a bunch of brats to take over a buisness park with their crap….S—y..STOP TALK FROTH..ITS NOT A GOOD LOOK….MYRON..U DONT WANT THE BUISNESS?MYRONN…NOT ME!..Thats what I heard

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