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PJL Literacy Program Closing Ceremony June 30th, 2020.
PJL Literacy Program Closing Ceremony June 30th, 2020.

PJL Literacy Program Closing Ceremony June 30th, 2020.

Winner Aquilla Pemberton receives a Lenova Lap Top courtesy of Philipsburg Jubilee Library. Philipsburg, June 30, 2020. The overall winner, Aquilla Pemberton, a fourth form student of the Sint Maarten Academy, received a laptop from the Philipsburg Jubilee Library. Ms. G. Holiday was accompanied by the Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports, the Honorable Rodolphe Samuel, who handed Aquilla her prize as seen in the photo.

The short ceremony was organized to award the participants and winners for their participation in the two-month literacy campaign held in May in June to stimulate literacy during the COVID-19 lock down. All students from primary and secondary schools were asked to express how they dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic and were encouraged to participate by submitting any of the following entrees about their personal experiences in the form of an essay, poem, research report, novel, song, video, blog, etc.

The library received essays, poems, drawings and raps. All art-work was judged by six professionals in the field of arts and education. The external judges were: Charisse Piper, Lucinda Audain, Sjorensly Valies, Lorenzo Gomez, Rita Carty, and Garfield Young. The internal judges were: Irmin Hughes, Francia Housen, and Mariland Powell.

The winners were: Sanaa Lake (age 7) in the category of primary school students, cycle 1. In the category of primary school students, cycle 2 the prizes went to: Amisha Lake (age 13), third runner-up; Gabriela Guimareas (age 10), second runner-up; Shylo Halley (age 10), first runner-up; Grace Khoury (age 10) winner. Last but not least in the category secondary school students the prizes were received by: Breyenne Brown (age 17), second runner-up; Makaria Baptista (age 17), first runner-up; Aquilla Pemberton (age 16) winner. These were the final words of her poem called ‘Rona Season’:

‘I am certain that my future stands ever-radiant,

and that nothing goes or comes without reason,

that this is a time of purpose,

that this is a season.’

All winners are required to join the library. Membership includes receiving the App for PJL E Reading and a code for the Kingdom Library online reading App. The prizes were made possible by our local businesses, TELEM, Office World, Intertoys, Shop N Take, Klass Electronics and Adolphus Richardson Technology. The prizes varied from mobile phone, tablets, books and a Lap Top.

Both the director and the Minister stressed on the importance for students to be able to read. G. Holiday emphasized that the devices received are tools to used to enhance the quality of work produced in this new era, but being able to read and comprehend is your passport to being among the leaders of this country and abroad.

Compliments to the focal group that made this program a reality and the Philipsburg Jubilee Library would like to use this opportunity to encourage all students in Sint Maarten to further develop their ways to express themselves. Continue to follow the PJL Facebook Page and the Website and the local news, because more of such programs will be coming soon.