St. George Secondary School Barbados

The School's History

The foundations of formal education in Barbados were laid by the philanthropic efforts of private individuals and by the humanitarian interest of the churches. Most of the older secondary schools in Barbados were found by endowments originally intended for the education of the white children of the planter class at a time when slavery existed in Barbados.
Education during this colonial period reinforced and perpetuated the values upon which that social structure rested. In that structure, which was associated with sugar production, slaves i.e blacks were denied access to formal schooling even though they comprised the bulk of the population.

By 1833 the Act of Emancipation, some efforts were made by the British government to provide some kind of schooling for the ex-slaves in Barbados. The British government however terminated its funding for education some twelve years later in 1845 and the state government provided the first grant of seven hundred and fifty pounds (£750) for education. This grant increased over time to fifteen thousand pounds (£15 000) by 1878 and the amount continually increased and mass primary education became possible by the start of the 1900s.
After world war two, i.e after 1945, a big effort was made to reform the educational system, especially the secondary system and the secondary modern or what was later called the comprehensive school, was introduced in 1952.

Erected on 13 acres of land that was once the property of Constant Plantation, the
St. George Secondary School, a mixed Comprehensive School, sometimes referred to as Constant school, first admitted pupils on October 3rd, 1972. The first intake of 940 pupils was drawn mainly from ten (10) “Feeder” schools in St. George and ranged in ages from 11 years to 15 years. A few pupils who were fairly successful in the Barbados School Leaving Certificate Examination but were attending non-feeder schools were also accepted.

The school was officially opened on the 28th November 1974. The first principal of the school was Mr. Kenneth Alleyne. The staff initially consisted of 45 persons about one half of whom were trained. Among them was a core of trained experienced teachers who rendered invaluable assistance in the initial planning and organization of the school.
Through the resourcefulness of the staff and students, the early difficulties, resulting from the incompletion of practical rooms and canteen and from a lack of certain essential equipment, were soon overcome.

In keeping with the policy of the Ministry of Education, the school catered to all levels of ability on a similar model to the British Comprehensive School. The most academically able students, comprising those whose Common Entrance Score was just below the minimum for admission to the “older secondary schools”’ pursued courses which led to the G.C.E. ‘O’ level Examination and the London Chamber of Commerce (L.C.C.)

Intermediate Examination in English and Arithmetic. Students who were less able were sometimes conveniently referred to as ‘B’ streamers, were guided through the Barbados School Leaving Certificate Examination to the Pitman’s and L.C.C. Examinations. The weakest pupils, approximately of 40% of the annual intake, followed a programme that had a practical and vocational bias.
Subjects studied were those commonly done in schools of this kind: English, History, Geography, Social Studies, Religious Knowledge, Spanish, French, General Science, Biology, Chemistry, Agricultural Science, Mathematics, Art, Music, Home Economics, Needlecraft, Handicraft, Technical Drawing, Woodwork, Metalwork, Bookkeeping, Commerce, Shorthand, Typing and Physical Education.

The school was built to accommodate 1200 children. The roll steadily increased from 940 pupils in 1972 to 1320 in 1982. At present, the school’s roll is 606. The emblem on our school crest is a lion. The reason for choosing this animal is the fact that there is a lion hewn out of rock in Gun Hill St. George, not far from the school.
The school song uses the motto of the school as its theme. Mr. Blair Walcott wrote the lyrics and
Mr. Hal Gollop composed the music. These two gentlemen were former teachers at the school.