PM Dr Drew Thanks TDC, Roots for Soft Skills to be Included in Schools’ Curriculum

Clockwise from top: School Principal Ms Sherema Collins; Mr Edward Claxton of TDC (right) presents a token of appreciation to PM Dr Drew; Prime Minister Drew mingles with school students; Prime Minister the Hon Dr Terrance Drew signs the visitors’ book.
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 BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, May 24, 2023 (MMS-SKN) — The highly successful and motivational ‘Warren C. Tyson Memorial Scholarship Public Primary Schools Tour’ continued Wednesday morning, May 24, with the Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, the Hon Dr Terrence Drew, making a presentation at his alma mater, the Deane Glasford Primary School in St. Peter’s.

“I was a TDC Scholarships student – the Warren C. Tyson Memorial Scholarship Programme student,” Prime Minister Drew told the attentive students. “I went to the same school. I went from here (pointing at the classroom) and I came all the way around here to Grade Six, when I came this building never used to be here. This is your school and this is my school as well. So I feel proud to be from Deane Glasford Primary School.”

He was welcomed by Principal, Ms Sherema Collins, while the ceremony was chaired by another of the former Deane Glasford Primary School students, and TDC Warren C. Tyson Memorial Scholarship Programme holder, Mr Edward Claxton, Assistant Manager at the TDC Home and Building Depot. He noted that the tour was part of TDC’s 50th anniversary celebrations being held under the theme ‘Your Neighbour, Your Partner, Your Future’.

Prime Minister Drew in his presentation stated that TDC contributed to his personal development, to the development of St. Kitts and Nevis, and to the general development of education. He mentioned a number of former TDC Warren C. Tyson Memorial Scholarship Programme holders, including Mr Claxton, Mrs Mary Browne-Isaac, and Ms Techelle McLean, who went through the school.

“Interestingly enough I purposely called those names because all of us who received the scholarship are professionals,” said the Honourable Prime Minister who is also the Area Parliamentary Representative for St. Christopher Eight. “So it means that the scholarship was impactful, and the scholarship helped us tremendously.”

He explained they were offered the opportunity to work at TDC on Saturdays and summer holidays where they were professionally trained by being exposed to the world of work, and at age 12 he and others had received soft skills that one does not learn in school.

Dr Drew pointed out that he would sometimes see people with eight, nine, or eleven subjects yet they can’t advance as much as they should, not because they are not intelligent but for reasons that they never had the opportunity to develop the soft skills, the professional skills, that he and other TDC Scholarship holders had at TDC.

“I want to thank TDC tremendously for that,” said the Honourable Prime Minister. “I hope, and I really hope that soft skills would be introduced into the curriculum because emotional intelligence we know now, is as important as IQ, which is the traditional way of measuring intelligence, and so TDC brought us all through those programmes, and over the years you are better at it and by the time you enter the world of work you would have already been trained in a lot of the things that the people now have to learn, so we had a jump-start.”

According to Dr Drew, it was because of that jump-start why so many of the students who went through the TDC Warren C. Tyson Memorial Scholarship Programme end up becoming professionals because they were taught from a very early age.

“There is no course in school that teaches you how to answer a phone; there is no course in school that teaches you how to dress professionally; there is no course in school that teaches you how to respond in a professional way; there is no course in the school that teaches you how to write professionally,” pointed out Dr Drew. “So a lot of these soft skills that I developed at TDC weren’t taught in school.”

While hoping that some of the pupils will be recipients of the Warren C. Tyson Memorial Scholarship Programme and join the group from St. Peter’s who have had the opportunity, Prime Minister Drew added that it is his hope that maybe somewhere in the school curriculum those types of skills would to be taught so that by the time the students enter the world of work, they would have already been trained and would be at ease with the employers and even with themselves as they would have entered with some skills already.

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