Government seeks US $20 million schools’ loan

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A U.S. $20 million Caribbean Development Bank loan is being negotiated to fund the continued expansion of the government-run schools.
Michael Browne, the minister of education, told OBSERVER media that the Ottos Comprehensive, Pares Secondary schools and the St. Mary’s School of Excellence will be three of the schools that will benefit.
“We have identified several areas where we will be injecting money. Ottos Comprehensive will be getting, I think, $7 million for two new blocks and the Pares Secondary School and the Antigua Girls’ High School and a new staff block for the Clare Hall Secondary School,” Browne said.
Earlier this week, a new three-storey concrete
structure was commissioned at the Jennings Secondary School, which now provides five classrooms, available rooms for visual arts, staffroom, additional bathroom facilities for students and teachers and a lab
for Electronic Document Preparation Management (EDPM).
Browne said once the loan is approved, approximately E.C. $40 million is to be spent on repairing and upgrading all the school plants across Antigua.
 He said the Ministry of Finance is negotiating the loan from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).
“Then we would have to complete the second phase of the Sir Novelle Richards Academy. The whole school is about $45 million, and we didn’t have all, so we’ve done some of the work and we are going to have to complete the second and third phase of the construction, so that there can be continued upgrade and expansion at that school,” he said.
The Sir Novelle Richards Academy was opened in November 2017 and the prime minister, Gaston Browne boasted that the institution is the first secondary school in the OECS to be constructed within two months and a week.
The school was opened with 100 plus students at the first form level and will expand throughout the years up to the Caribbean Secondary Examination Certificate level in a few years.

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