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Ten more local youngsters will receive scholarships to study at Island Academy school thanks to a donation of US$100,000 from the Calvin Ayre Foundation (CAF).

The charity headed by the billionaire business has donated the funds to give children from low-income families a helping hand.

The private, independent school in Buckleys reopened its doors on August 27.

CAF’s executive director Corinna Delowsky said the money was in addition to the organisation’s annual bursary of US$200,000 which currently supports 20 students.

She said she hoped the move would help eliminate debt incurred by educational costs, and boost motivation to complete school.

“The Calvin Ayre Foundation is incredibly proud to sponsor the scholarship at Island Academy International School,” Delowsy said. “Our aim is to give bright and capable children from low-income households the opportunities that elevate them to a level playing field, so that they may make their dreams a reality.”

The onslaught of the Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in numerous parents across the nation experiencing significant financial pressure, whether through job loss or a reduction in salary. The donation is set to add some welcome reprieve for struggling families.

Island Academy’s founder and board member, Bernadette Sherman, said the gift was “a lifeline for students wishing to change the trajectory of their lives”.

“By providing this opportunity to Antigua’s youth, the foundation continues to escalate valuable educational opportunities. The foundation has been one of the preeminent benefactors of the school over many years and we are immensely grateful for their investment into the future of our island nation.”

Island Academy is the only international school on the island and is known for its International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IB).

It currently has around 280 students, of which 78 percent are Antiguan/OECS citizens. Of the total school population, 115 children – just over 40 percent – receive financial aid.

CAF has been donating to Island Academy since 2015 and has pledged its continued support.

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