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NPA President Calls Out Parents Amid Concerns Over Gangs In Schools


Amid reports of secondary school students involved in gangs, the President of the National Principals Association (NPA) has called on parents to shoulder their responsibility in disciplining their children and ensuring the youngsters do not loiter in the streets after school.

Valerie St. Helene-Henry spoke as police investigations continue into the wounding of a student in Castries on Wednesday afternoon.

The NPA President said it was unfortunate that there were incidents of student loitering, fights, and gangs in the first week of school.

“I am aware of schools that have reported students belonging to gangs,” St. Helene-Henry told St. Lucia Times.

She observed that some students avoid classes because they are ‘wanted’ by gang members.

The NPA official spoke of the need for continued stakeholder intervention to curtail the student loitering and fights after school hours.

“These are things that have always been there, but they are escalating,” St. Helene-Henry noted.

In addition, she explained that people usually tend to turn the spotlight on the role of principals and teachers.

However, the NPA official disclosed that principals and teachers are already doing a lot in school to guide students on how to behave and deal with conflicts.

Nevertheless, she asserted that as soon as youngsters enter their homes and communities, they encounter the same things educators try to guard them against.

As a result, St. Helene-Henry said parents need to step up.

“Do not wait until there’s death to be on television saying, ‘Oh, he was a good boy’ and saying all the good things. Sometimes those students are repeat offenders at schools. The Principals have tried. They have sent them for counselling, tried other measures,” she observed.

“But if the parents do not play their part then we are lost,” the NPA President lamented.

She said parents need to establish curfews and check on their children regarding student loitering.

And she suggested that some parents had perhaps given up on their children.

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  1. Agree parents have a roll to play in their children’s education however I think the government needs to put some news rules in place to keep these kids in line both during and after school hours too many students roaming the streets after hours in school uniforms engaging in all kinds of illegal activities

  2. In this current climate of influencers and much social media I am not certain which is the best approach to this. However, what I do know is this — if you train your children in the proper manner they will be focused – there was always and will always be peer pressure no matter the season.
    You can certainly bend a tree when is is young – you need to explain to your children when you have raised them in the right way – [I have brought you up in the proper manner – if you decide to follow individuals who are engaged in gang related and criminal activity – rest assured you are and will be on your own]

  3. Just like every leader in our society following the top leader and blaming others and alwasy knowing what other should be doing. Well, Mandame principal the culture of single parenting which has become a culture because we hv a law that says a Child belongs to the mother. Absent parents throughout the day because they have to work looonnnggg hours and even take longer time in traffic to and from work is not the parent fault. Then the school system casues children to feel like failures. I know a kid with interest in IT, but the secondary school he is sent to doesn’t hv IT, so he is stuck there and seemingly uninterested in learning. Govt Policies, School Rules are contributing factors, frustrating kids into rebellion. Then ALL jobs, scholarships are political motivated lvn kids more frustrated Attack what u can change. Speak to the Min of Education. DO SOMETHING AND STOP TALKING

  4. let me tell yall something its not the teachers fault uh its most of the time the parents if not all the time cause pass by the constitution park in town or by the bars on the market. if you see the breed of unmannerly women that have no type of good behavior that are having children then when those kids grow up the same thing most of them doing. But fellas i blame yall too yall going and have relationships with a kind a mad tingz

  5. Our education system is in a mess. The whole thing has to be revamped. The Ministry of Education has no interest in doing this. The issues in society should be solved by our education system but the system is creating more issues. We are in trouble!

  6. This administration needs to look at other island countries to see if they have curtailed that problem. Even other countries on the planet. Some countries implement after school vocational programmes, some of which are mandatory, so that the students can have a skill and/or further that skill on a tertiary level. Therefore, that student CAN BECOME exemplary and make a living, in their chosen vocation.

    VOCATION – undergoing training in a skill or trade to be pursued as a career; which could be in ANYTHING.


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