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Protests at Belmopan Compre

The school board is allowing 17 students who did not meet the academic criteria to graduate

BELIZE CITY, Thurs. June 6, 2019– On Wednesday, students and teachers of the Belmopan Comprehensive High School stood together in protest against the board of the institution. This was the direct result of a decision made by the school board to allow seventeen students who did not meet the academic criteria to graduate.

Upon receipt of this information, several teachers submitted written requests for the board to reverse this decision, but their words fell upon deaf ears.

This led to a three-day sit-out that began on Monday, June 3, which marked the start of exam week at the high school. Teachers have not been showing up to administer the exams to their students and those who have showed up have remained outside of the classrooms as a sign of protest.

On Wednesday, the situation became even more severe, as students began to leave their exams to join the teachers in protest on the school grounds. Educators and pupils stood together singing the national anthem and the school song loudly, while other students tried to sit their final examinations.

A police mobile unit even arrived at the school to ensure the safety of the children, and after an hour of protest, the Ministry of Education workers along with the school facilitators decided to cancel exams for the day, which was announced by interim school principal Madeline Guzman.

There was an official document drafted by the school stating that students who missed their exams to protest would be able to sit them on Monday, June 10, and those who remained in the classrooms would have to retake their exams.

The media conducted interviews, asking students why they did/did not stand in solidarity with the teachers and of course, the answers varied. For those who remained inside the exam rooms, however, the majority saw the retaking of their exams as a setback because they would have to endure the process for a second time despite remaining focused on their coursework.

Graduations were scheduled for Thursday, but there was no official statement released by the board of the high school to confirm whether or not their decision has been reversed.

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