We just witnessed thestaging of the major school sporting activities held in Grenada on a yearly basis and it leaves me asking these questions:
Where are the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Sport, the Intercol Management Body, if there is one, and the other Secondary Schools on the island?
Do they care that WESTERHALL SECONDARY SCHOOL is a co-ed? Do they know that there are female athletes at the WESTERHALL SECONDARY SCHOOL? Are they looking at the WESTERHALL SECONDARY SCHOOL’S attitude towards the female athletes/students?
Do they realise that for two years in a row WESTERHALL SECONDARY came into Intercol without a girls’ team, after staging a secondary school sports that involved girls in every event that is competed at for Intercol? Do we know why they are not allowing the GIRLS to compete?
Well, I am observing that, and I am saying it is not right. It is discrimination on the face of it, and if there is another reason, then the School Principal, the school administration, and the Ministry of Education owe those girls, the other secondary schools, and the general public an explanation.
They need to explain why there were no girls representing WESTERHALL SECONDARY at the Intercol meet for two years. They need to explain why the Ministry of Education is supporting the school’s decision to ostracise and alienate the girls, and if they are not supporting it, why they are not doing anything about it.
It seems that the opinion of the school is that “the girls do not want to train and participate in the structured training programme as established by the school, and as such they are not of the quality that should represent the school”
My opinion is, “this is a school event, every child has a right to participate”. If you cannot get the girls out to train, why isn’t the Ministry of Education and or Sports called in to handle the situation? Was there not a lone, single, solitary girl who was willing to train, and who possessed the qualities that would deem her worthy of representing the school?
I will also ask if a student’s show at the intercol is only to make the school look good, and not to give that student an opportunity to participate in the activity regardless of their inability to bring home medals?
I remember the years when schools like St. Rose, Westmorland, Wesley College, Bishop’s College, and Hillsborough Secondary came to Intercol and left without a point, or with minimum points. The true spirit of those schools was to send the athletes that they had at the time whether or not they would bring back points. It is their right to participate.
Who is to tell my child that I created, supported, raised and sent to Westerhall Secondary School that they do not deserve to be seen on the field running to the finish line, because they will not bring any honour to the school?
I submit that if my child is willing to represent herself and her school based on her ability; then the school is unscrupulous to tell her that she cannot, because she is too slow, or lack resistance, or cannot jump high enough.
Westerhall Secondary school is saying to the girls, “IF YOU WANT TO BE SEEN AT OR PARTICIPATE IN INTERCOL, GO TO ANOTHER SCHOOL”. This is DICRIMINATION. If it resembles discrimination then it is DISCRIMINATION.
It’s amazing that the boys put on such a good show, albeit that they are progressively moving down the ladder, year after year, and the girls are left at home, or asked to sit in the bleachers and cheer the boys on. Are we saying that the role of Westerhall Secondary School Girls is to be subservient and support the Boys from an unseen spot?
Are we reverting to the days when females were needed only to bring more men into the world? Or are we to ask the question “DOES THE SEXUAL ORIENTATION OF THE HEAD COACH AT WESTERHALL SECONDARY HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH THE TREATMENT METED OUT TO THE FEMALE STUDENTS?”
That, Mr. Editor, is the question of the day. Be that as it may, the school needs to stand up and explain itself. But more so, the parents of the female athletes need to get together and demand justice for their children. If I were a lawyer, I would take this case for those girls pro bono because if this is not discrimination, I want someone to tell me what is.
Mr. Minister, Madam Permanent Secretaries, Madam Chief Education Officer, Principals, Parents, please tell the nation why the WESTERHALL SECONDARY SCHOOL is allowed to DISCRIMINATE against their FEMALE athletes.
Why are you not looking into the happenings at the Westerhall Secondary School Athletics Program? Why do you allow the adults to decide what is best for the school and not what is best for the students?
Recently you came over the various media promising to protect the students. Well, here is an opportunity for you to protect them, because there is more than what meet the eyes.
There is a lot happening in the boys’ locker room, on the beaches, in the showers, and everywhere else… and evidently nothing is happening at the Intercol games for the GIRLS AT WESTERHALL SECONDARY SCHOOL.