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Land swap: Plans underway to switch Magistrate’s Court with special needs school

The semi-permanent Magistrate’s Court building in John’s Hole Tortola.

Plans are well underway for a land swap between the Magistrate’s Court in John’s Hole and a local special needs school on Tortola, Education Minister Dr Natalio Wheatley has said.

The minister said the decision to swap the lands followed a tour of a United Kingdom-based school in January this year.

“I am excited about a land swap between the Magistrate’s Court and Eslyn Henley [Richiez Learning Centre’s] current location; facilitated by the Minister of Lands as well as Cabinet,” Dr Wheatley said while speaking at the opening ceremony for Education Week on Sunday.

He continued: “This swap will place Eslyn Henley closer to Althea Scatliffe and allow them to share resources, such as the school playground.” 

While Dr Wheatley did not go into further details, he said an architect is currently ‘re-designing’ the Learning Centre which just recently celebrated its 47th anniversary of existence.

The students at Eslyn Henley have been based at Althea Scatliffe Primary since hurricanes Irma and Maria affected the special needs school.

On the other hand, the Magistrate’s Court facility, which was also affected during the hurricanes, is now operating from a semi-permanent structure at it’s usual John’s Hole address.

Notably, ecessive noise from the nearby Althea Scatliffe Primary has always affected proceedings at the court.

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  1. Great Idea says:

    Hon. Minister thank you so much for this.

    Since the hurricanes in 2017 the Eslyn Henley school had to be relocated to the Althea Scatliffe School compound. It started out a bit rough but as time passed I have watched the special needs children improve drastically. There was one student in particular that use to actually teach the children Spanish in the court yard during lunch hours. My children looked forward to that every day. They use to come home and talk about the words they learned and the correct way to pronounce them.

    I have been saying over time that I feel they need to stay close to the regular children so that they feel included.

    One another note, the indecent language that echoes from outside the magistrate’s court is most disgusting. They seem to forget that there is a school right next door.

    Again I say thank you for this as it is much needed.

    Like 25
  2. mindful says:

    How about a Minister swap? Give us back Myron and you go somewhere else like back to school or something

    Like 4
    Dislike 16
    • Um says:

      I’m sure you know where he live. Go find him with your minority opinion. We are now in a different era so move on and help progress instead of living in the past. Politicians will change. That’s just the way it is so get used to it.

      Like 4
      Dislike 2
  3. Shorty says:

    This is a nice idea but is the land which houses the magistrate court even crown land? I don’t think so it’s private property that was leased to government building which previously housed the court as well as it was originally a residential home before the court.

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