They studied hard, were willed on by faithful parents and teachers, and now this year’s top performers in the National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) have much to celebrate – but none more than Terron Alleyne of Regma Primary School in Linden.
“I was very shocked…I just laughed and laughed,” he said yesterday, reacting to news that he had secured the number one spot with 537 marks.
An aspiring pilot who wants to travel the world, Terron created an eruption of euphoria at his school – and the Town of Linden – with his outstanding performance.
“This feels very, very good, I’m so happy, I knew I was going to do well, but never dreamed of doing this well,” he told Kaieteur News.
Terron said he didn’t expect to be the top student. When he heard the news, he said he felt “happy and proud” and his parents shared that joy.
“They hugged me and told me how happy they were, and how I could do just as well when it comes to CXC,” Kerron related. He said he attended lessons round the clock, including weekends.
He was high in praise for his Teacher Cheryl Wills and his parents for their support.
Sariah Singh, 11, of the ABC Academy copped a total of 536 marks out of an overall 551 marks. She said the news of being placed second among the country’s top performers came as a surprise.
“I was expecting to excel but not to this level; I did put in a lot of work and made a lot of sacrifice,” Sariah told Kaieetur News.
Sariah who is an aspiring doctor says her success was as a result of long hours of studying, extra lessons and dedication.
“While preparing for the exams I had to give up watching television, playing and some other extra curricular activities.”
But in the end Sariah says all her hard work has paid off as she has not only made herself proud, but her teachers and parents. Now that the hard work is over, Sariah says she will make the best of the August holiday while using the time to prepare for secondary school life. She however noted that the hard work does not end here as she aspires to be among the country’s top performers at the Caribbean Examinations Council exams.
Sarah David-Longe, of the Success Elementary School, is one of three persons to tie for third place. She said all her hard work has paid off. She scored a total of 534 points out of a possible 551, which has secured her a place at Queens College.
Sarah is a student of the relatively new school of Mr. Wilfred Success, at Eccles, East Bank Demerara.
The bubbly 11-year old said that she always knew that she would come out successful since she studied tremendously and also because she was trusting in the almighty to bring her out. Sarah said that her parents and teacher also helped push her to success.
The aspiring lawyer says she has to focus on her secondary education now, and this would serve to solidify the foundation to her future career path.
Carol Hopkinson with 534 marks placed third overall. Also from the Regma Primary School, she had this reaction to the news: “I’m a little bit surprised; I knew I was going to do well, but definitely not get third in the country.”
Carol said she studied a lot and took a lot of lessons, both in school and privately. She has not pinned down a career ambition just yet.
Angelie Persaud, from Lima Village on the Essequibo Coast, has ensured that the C.V. Nunes Primary School, maintains its excellent performance over the years. Together with Sarah and Carol she has placed third nationally, with 534 marks. Angelie feels proud of her accomplishment. Leading up to the exams, she used a time-table to discipline herself in studying, and she also took extra lessons. Angelie’s mother, who teaches at the very school, said her daughter has never missed a single day of school. Angelie’s class teacher Nikitta Blucher, said despite Angelie’s natural academic abilities, she also participates in extra-curricular activities.
Tyreka Mohabir, an aspiring doctor, is the other student to make the Regma Primary School proud. Placing sixth overall (533 marks), Tyreka said she is proud of her achievement, and was high in praise of her teacher, and above all wanted to thank God for her success
“I studied every minute of the day, and it was very challenging towards the end, but I never gave up,” she told Kaieteur News.
She said that she was surprised that her school had done so well, since Georgetown and the other regions had always dominated the top positions over the years.
Regional Chairman Mortimer Mingo visited the School yesterday to personally congratulate the head mistress Mary Haywood, and Grade Six Teacher Cheryl Wills and the successful students.
Mingo pointed out that in the past he had been somewhat critical of the education sector in the Region, but it was only because he knew that the potential was always there for students to excel and do as well as children from elsewhere in the country.
“‘We have proven this year, that our children are no less than children anywhere else, and our teachers, are no less committed than teachers anywhere else in Guyana.
“Linden or Region 10 is no different from anywhere else in the country, so if those other children can do it, our children can too,” said Mingo.
Teacher Cheryl Wills said she was very proud of her students. She said she had shown her students the newspapers with last year’s top students and told them: “Next year I want to see students from this school on the front page.”
Wills said that she is happy that her students took her exhortations. Headmistress Mary Haywood was also extremely happy with the results obtained by the students of her school.
“I knew they were going to do well. I was almost certain they would top the Region, but I never dreamed of this (topping the country).”
Thalia Baeza-Milan, of School of the Nations, also shared sixth place. This achievement for 11 year-old Thalia will certainly give her the push to do even better. She gained a total of 533, and like many other students, didn’t expect to excel the way she did.
She said her success is not only hers, but that of her school.
“I am from Cuba and English is my second language, so that in itself was a major challenge.
“There were times when the teacher would be teaching and I would just get frustrated and fume because I couldn’t understand,” she said.
What was even more challenging for Thalia was the fact that her mother was unable to help at home and her only help was the teachers and special classes which she had to attend.
“It all paid off in the end, thanks to my teachers who exercised patience with me.”
This aspiring archaeologist said this achievement has not only given her more confidence, but has also made her parents proud. Thalia says she is going to show her little sister – who is struggling with the language – that she can excel. For now, Thalia says she will enjoy her August vacation and use the time to prepare herself for life at secondary school.
Kareem Abdool, was the second best performer for the Success Elementary School, and sixth place nationally.
With a broad smile on his face, 11-year old Kareem says he truly believes that hard work pays off. Abdool scored 533 points which secured him a spot at Queen’s College.
Abdool said he prepared for his exams by studying extremely hard. He said that he is satisfied with his results and he will be working even harder in High School.
His future ambition is to become magistrate. He thanked his parents and teachers who helped him.
The very shy Narissa Persaud, of Leonora Primary School, is a doctor in the making, and therefore it is no wonder that her favourite science projects are centered on the human body. Narissa prefers to say she is “fascinated” with science – so give her a quick quiz on anything from the various body systems to the solar system and she’ll sweep you off your feet. Her dream was to attend Queen’s College, and with 532 marks, and an overall national placement of ninth, she has earned that spot at the nation’s top secondary school. Her teachers were sure that she would do well, and so they had pinned on her two badges – Very Exceptional Child and one that put her in a “Special Group” of her school’s high achievers.
Shafeek Rayman, of the Dharmic Rama Krishna Primary School, has his eyes set on owning a hotel one day and become a very successful businessman in the hospitality industry. His favourite subject is Mathematics and he gets good scores. And so he reasons he would make a good businessman. Shafeek scored 531 marks, and placed tenth overall. Shafeek says he studied long and hard for the exams, and so he is very happy at the results. On weekends, he enjoys playing cricket, and when he has other spare time, he looks at the local learning channel.
Edmund Henry, of the New Guyana School ,says this achievement has brought great joy to his family and he has made them proud. Edmund secured 531 marks and shared tenth place with Shafeek Rayman.
Edmund says his results bring a feeling of relief and relaxation.
“I was expecting to do well but not to this extent but nevertheless I am thankful to God.”
For Edmund his preparation period was fun as he says his secret was to “study smart.”
“I believe in all day work and no play makes Jill a dull girl, you have to learn to study smart, do not exhaust yourself.”
He says he owes his success to God, his parents and teachers. This aspiring doctor said he will now go back to some of the things he had to put aside for awhile.
“I love karate and video games, but I had to put that aside so now I will try to have a little fun.”
Brassette Henry, 11, of Mae’s Under 12 secured a total of 530 marks. This earned her the 12th place along with three other students. A well spoken young lady, Brassette told this newspaper that she was confident with the amount of work she put in and she is more that satisfied with the results.
“I knew I did well but the feeling is one that I can’t explain at this point.”
Looking back at the sacrifices she made, Brassette said preparations for her were not easy.
“My mother pushed me a lot. There were times I complained about migraine headaches but she would still send me to lessons. There were times when I was overwhelmed with schoolwork, but it was all worth it.”
Over the next few weeks, this clever young lady said she will be relaxing at home as she gears up for a totally different environment at secondary school where she will continue to work towards her goal of becoming a doctor.
Tanesha Johnson of North Georgetown Primary School shared the 12th position and was elated with the news. When this publication visited the school yesterday, congratulations were in order for her by other students as well as teachers. Although she was not satisfied with the work she did on examination day she said the results is satisfying.
“When I was doing Maths, time was running out so I had to hurry up but I was surprised with the results.”
Tanesha, who is an aspiring obstetrician, says she will continue to work hard in order achieve her lifelong goals.
Her advice to others who will soon be preparing for the exams is to make the necessary sacrifice as it pays off.
“Even if it means giving up a little television time and playing time, do it; it is worth it.”
Now that exams are over and school will be closing Tanesha said she will be using the time to catch up with friends, some of whom she had to put aside while preparing for exams.
Filled with joy, Ronaldo McGarrell of Green Acres Primary, said that he can finally breathe a sigh of relief , knowing that he has secured a spot at the highest school in the country.
Scoring a total of 530 points, Mc Garrell will be attending Queen’s College come this September.
The 11-year-old said that he studied extremely hard and was confident throughout the examinations.
Ronaldo credits his success to the support of his parents, teachers and a host of other relatives.
His future ambition is to become a lawyer, since he believes that it’s a noble profession.
Gabriella Bacchus, also of Green Acres Primary, scored a total of 529 point and has secured a spot at Queen’s College.
“I’ve made my family proud,” said Gabriella. The 11-year-old said her parents would sit and study with her, always confident that she would do well. She shares the Top 15 spot with five others.
She said her parents also developed a strategy, which was that they would allow her to do one extra-curricular activity. She picked taking piano lessons, something she found to be fun. Her future ambition is to become a forensic scientist, since she believes that she can solve crimes and help bring perpetrators to justice.
Maya Persram, of the Marian Academy, shares the Top 15 position. She was very elated to know that she placed among the country’s top performers.
Maya said she prepared very hard for her examinations by taking extra lessons and reinforcement classes at her school. The 11-year-old said that her mother would always study with her.
“We did past papers and with the lessons I did ….I was prepared for the exams,” Maya said. Her ambition is to become a psychiatrist.
Eleven-year-old Ryan Benschop of Concord Academy, is another to share the Top 15 ranking, with a total of 529 marks. This comes as no surprise to Ryan, since he was always an “A” student. For Ryan, preparation for the exams was like preparing for any other test, and simply required making some sacrifices. These, he said, included cutting down on the time spent browsing the internet, looking at television and other activities.
Ryan says all his work and dedication has paid off and he is satisfied with the outcome. Most importantly for Ryan is the fact that he has made his parents – Mark and Maria Benschop – proud.
Ryan, who is fascinated with science, says he hopes to become a neurologist.
When this publication visited the Success Elementary School to chat with Kara Abrams, the news of sharing the Top 15 place was a total shock to her. But for her teachers it was expected, as the 11 year-old had always been a ‘A’ grade student.
“I know I put in a lot of work and my teachers, especially Sir Success, did a lot of work with us so I had to live up to their expectations.”
For Kara, there was a lot of pressure as she felt the needed to follow in her brother’s footsteps since he was once among the country’s top performers at the Grade Six Assessment.
“I wanted to make my parents proud so I had to make the sacrifice, and now I am happy with my achievement.”
For Kara, now that all the hard work and the suspense is over, she can relax, breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy the August holiday. Kara aspires to become a doctor one day, as she loves caring for people.
Christana Crammer, 11, also shares the Top 15 spot. If one word could describe Christana, it definitely has to be “enthusiastic. “
Christana was eager to find out what her score was and what school she had gained. She obtained a total of 529 marks which has placed her at Queen’s College. She said she studied very hard and it has paid off.
“I studied hard….I prayed and I know that God would have brought me out,” Christana said.
She thanked her parents, teachers and other well wishers.
Sangeeta Singh, from the Saraswat Primary School, West Coast Demerara, stayed up late at night in order to prepare for the exams, and all of that hard work paid off. She scored 529 marks, also earning the No. 15 slot among top performers. She is a Mathematic genius for her age. “All you really need to know is the formulas, and everything else flows,” she told Kaieteur News. Her dream is to one day become a lawyer, and she belies her place at Queen’s College will help her to make true on that aspiration. For fun, Sangeeta plays cricket and other outdoor games.
Based on the number of shared places for the number 15 spot, the remaining top students featured are tied for twenty-first position.
Niarie McKenzie emerged the top performer of Stella Maris Primary with 528 marks. It is an achievement the 11-year-old accepted with a great degree of humility.
“It’s a quite humbling experience to learn that I earned the highest score for my school, and that I am among the Top Performers in this year’s Grade Six Assessment. I was overwhelmed when I received the news.”
For Niarie, the first thing that came to her mind was that she had made her school proud.
“I’m not particularly surprised that I did well, because the preparation that I was exposed to was so thorough that the exams turned out to be fairly easy for me.”
Niarie said she absolutely loves reading and that served to boost her confidence. She is mindful of how her success came.
“Of course, I thank God for blessing me with the ability to comprehend and conquer all challenges that come before me. I also appreciate that my family have lovingly supported me. They are a blessing. My teacher, Mrs. Renate Perry-Clarke, whom I love very much, was responsible for my continued focus. She has truly been a wonderful and inspirational guide for me. I will miss her.”
“I also would like to recognise the efforts of my lessons tutor, Mr. Wilfred Success, whose simple methods made most things seem routine. And I must not forget my grandfather, Gerald, for giving so much of his time to see that I was comfortable throughout the exam year.”
With respect to her future, Niarie has a clear sense of the path ahead.
“I will be extremely happy to attend Queen’s College, since my parents also did. I simply love competition, and my Dad tells me that at QC the rivalry is quite intense. “My ultimate desire is to be a forensic pathologist.”
Maneesha Balgobin, with 528 marks, has done Windsor Forest Primary proud. She said the examinations were “reasonable.” Maneesha stayed up late at nights, sometimes up to 23:00 h to make sure she understood the school work. She also took extra lessons to help with preparations for the exams. In her spare time, Maneesha enjoys a good game of cricket with her brother.
Cindy Sookwah, an aspiring businesswoman of the Success Elementary School, said this achievement came as no surprise to her as she was also confident about herself and the work she put in.
“I knew I would have come out on top, the work that came for the exams were things that we did it school, and all I had to do was apply myself properly.”
“I must say thanks to Sir Success because he dedicated his time to us and my parents who were always supportive.”
Sasha Cox, of Green Acres Primary, said she always had the belief that she would have been placed among the country’s top students. According to Sasha, this is only confirmation that she has studied hard and was motivated by her teachers and parents.
Sasha said she was a bit disappointed that she was not awarded the number one spot, but nevertheless said that she was grateful that she is on the list of top performers.
She revealed that during her preparation for the exams she had to cut off certain extra curricular activities such as dancing and music lessons. Sasha’s career goal is to become a lawyer.
Shebikie Jackson, of Regma Primary, is justly proud of her accomplishment. She reasons that along with the rest of those who share her ranking, they were merely nine marks away from the top spot – achieved with 537.
The charming Shebikie credits her success to God, her parents and her friends and family.She also singled out two teachers – Michelle McIntyre and Cheryl Wills. She said her school’s excellent performance at this year’s examinations is the result of an extra push – an extra boost of confidence which made them feel anything was possible and indeed it appears that is exactly the case because her school has yielded up this year’s top performer.
Shebikie said that she was aiming for Queen’s College for some time now and she is ecstatic that she has earned herself a place at the school. But the Lindener is also aware of the long road ahead as she and her family have committed to her travelling to and from Linden every day to get to school. She plans to go into the sciences and eventually study to become a pediatrician but she is also very interested in History. Her hobbies are reading, watching television and playing board games such as Scrabble.
Chareese Vandyke says her results were no surprise to her as she was confident in herself and work. For Chareese, all her hard work has paid off, as preparation caused her many long hours of studying and going over school work she found difficult to understand. This achievement is not only important to Chareese and her family but also the school she attends, Mae’s Under 12.
For now Chareese said she will try to catch up on some of the activities she was forced to put aside while preparing for exams.
“Singing is my first passion and then comes reading, I had to put those two aside but now I will enjoy reading my novels and start back with my singing.”
However ,Chareese said she will continue to work hard as she enters the secondary level since her aim is to continue to be a front runner in academics throughout her schooling years. Chareese hopes to one day become a doctor.
Liza Tilakdhari, 11, of the New Guyana School, is more than relieved at news that she scored a place at Queen’s College. It’s not that the examinations were hard. She studied late into the nights and even had extra lessons. But she was still nervous about the results. Now, she is overwhelmed at being ranked 21 overall. Liza is intrigued by politics and hopes one day she could get involved. But before, she wants to become a lawyer or a doctor, like her mother Nneka Dyall. To unwind from studies, Liza says she enjoys swimming and reading.
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