Information Officer II
Ministry of Education and Culture
Phone: 468-3107 Ext 3353
The 4th Annual Eslyn Henley Richiez Learning Centre Day will be recognised on October 12 and this year’s observance will focus on the school’s history.
The school, formerly the Fort Charlotte Children’s Centre, officially opened its doors on October 12, 1972 in an old Public Works Department store room at McNamara and caters to the educational needs of differently-abled students.
Minister for Education and Culture, Honourable Myron V. Walwyn spoke of the importance of recognising the day as Government continues to make significant strides in special needs education.
Minister Walwyn said, “We are continuing our work on developing our education system to concentrate on providing even more services for our differently-abled students to be truly included in our society, both academically and socially.”
Honourable Walwyn made special mention of the school’s first principal Mrs. Eslyn Henley Richiez and staff member Ms. Alice Leonard, who were tasked with creating a foundation to facilitate the Territory’s special education needs over 40 years ago. He also praised the institution’s current staff and thanked them for all their hard work and dedication towards the students.
Principal, Mrs. Vansittart Huggins said it is important to note the history of the special education school, in addition to recognising its role in the Territory.
She said, “The school, like many great institutions, started from very humble beginnings. It was important back then, and it is even more important now, for us to maintain our focus, that is, to provide the highest quality special education, while emphasising individual growth, self-esteem and respect for all.”
Mrs. Huggins added, “When we recognise Eslyn Henley Richiez Learning Centre Day, we are also celebrating our special students. We are celebrating their talents and how much they have grown.”
On Tuesday October 13, during ‘Reading is Fun Week’, students from the learning centre will perform in a play titled, ‘The Jolly Postman and other People’s Letters’ at the Noel Lloyd Positive Action Movement Park. The play begins at 10:00 a.m. and the public is invited to attend.
Principal Huggins paid tribute to the individuals and groups who have assisted with the production of the play, including Government services: BVI Post, the Public Library, and the Elmore Stoutt High School’s Art and Guidance Departments; and private organisations: Mourant Ozannes Law Firm and the Long Look Full Gospel Sunday School.
The observance of the Eslyn Henley Richiez Learning Centre Day is in keeping with the “Culture of Excellence” being spearheaded by the Ministry of Education and Culture.
Eslyn Henley Richiez Learning Centre’s vision is for students to become productive and accepted citizens of the community.