Students of the Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) were involved in yet another public fight and have seemingly graduated to damaging private property.
The latest incident reportedly happened among junior students shortly after midday on Wednesday when their school shift ended.
Elizabeth Hooper, who is daughter of the owner of Island Paints in Pasea Estate, said the company is now left with a $400 bill because of the fight.
She further noted that customers and onlookers inside the business establishment narrowly escaped injury.
According to Hooper, a member of the company was recording the fight on video to report to the school principal when an annoyed male student threw a rock through one of the company’s glass windows.
She said no one inside the business establishment got hurt when the student threw the missile. That is largely because the window was double glass, Hooper said. She told BVI News the rock broke the outer glass but left the inner glass intact.
“We have to put a hurricane shutter up tonight because our window got smashed. It is becoming too much,” she told BVI News yesterday.
The matter was reported to the police, she said.
Fights affecting business
Hooper said ever since ESHS relocated to its temporary school structure in Pasea Estate, things have been going downhill businesswise.
She said customers are now refusing to visit the establishment during lunch hours, which is said to be peak hours for the business.
“I got recordings of customers saying that they are not coming to Pasea Estate around lunchtime,” Hooper remarked.
“One said today it is too dangerous and we should close over lunch time. So it is affecting our business as well.”
No regard for the elderly
Hooper noted that junior students are the sole troublemakers, adding that those schoolgoers have no regard for the elderly.
She recalled one instance when one of their employees had to rescue a senior citizen from being too close to a student brawl.
“He wasn’t involved in their scuffle but he couldn’t get away quick enough. They were knocking him about.”
Businesses fed up
Hooper said the Pasea Estate business community, which comprises TICO, Island Services, RiteWay, and Island Paints are at their wits end with unruly students.
Besides the incessant fights, Hooper said the students often sit at the entrance of business places, preventing customers from the ease of access.
She complained that students have also been impeding the free flow of traffic in the area.
“This matter has been going on for far too long. It has been happening since December and it’s now early April. Nothing has changed.”
Hooper told BVI News the business community has held meetings with the Education Ministry and have pleaded for increased security or police presence but the matter has virtually remained the same.
She noted that police has been at the location on a number occasions to direct traffic.
She is now renewing calls for help to restore order among the Pasea business community, which was once a relatively incident-free area
“I would like to see the younger students controlled,” she said.
Just recently, ESHS Principal Sandy Underhill called on local businesses to emulate the Tortola Pier Park by enforcing policies to curb public displays of student indiscipline.
She also underscored the importance of parents taking greater responsibility for their children.
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