Education Minister, Doctor Gale Rigobert, has condemned two recent attacks on students of St Mary’s College (SMC) during a visit today to the institution.
Rigobert addressed a gathering of the students and held a meeting afterwards with Principal – Rowan Seon and other officials.
“Yet again unscrupulous, evil minded, cowardly individuals from our society have chosen to prey on our innocent young men in attendance at this institution,” the Minister said in an interview after addressing the students.
She said it was disturbing that anyone would consider robbing an adult, far less an innocent child in uniform who is in search of a good education.
“I really must send a strong message to those persons who think that they can prey on our innocent young people and get away with it,” Rigobert declared.
She disclosed that her ministry is in talks with the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) to ensure that there is a swift response and more is done to deter would be bandits from attacking children.
Rigobert recalled that when the first incident occurred her ministry put into motion what was required to assess the gravity of the concern at the SMC and the school’s security needs.
She said it was recognized that while in the short term additional personnel may be part of the answer, the ministry is more concerned with a holistic review of safety and security at the SMC and all schools generally.
Rigobert said the issue of security had come up for discussion a few weeks prior to the reopening of school, as the safety and security of children are critical concerns.
“We have in the short term identified additional manpower to provide security services,” the minister said of the situation at the SMC.
College boys were attacked and robbed this week while on the college field.
One boy was struck with a stone in the attack by two young men, one of whom was recognized.
Bags belonging to two boys were stolen but were recovered later minus two mobile telephones.
Last week students of the SMC were attacked while on the school compound.
Their wallets and mobile telephones were taken.