- Dr. David Stair – Custos Rotulorum for the Parish of Hanover
- Reverend Don Lewis – Board Chairman, Chester Castle All-Age and Infant School
- Tiffany Grant-Smith – Principal
- Teachers and other members of staff
- Distinguished guests
- Ladies and gentlemen
Good morning to you all.
- Boys and girls how are you? (Wait for response)
- I am incredibly happy to be here with you today. You all look sharp, wide-eyed and eager. I am sure you are a delight to your teachers.
Commendations to the School
- Today, I want to spend a little time to commend you and your school for the achievements you have made over the years:
- the Spirit of Path Award
- the Region 4 Certificate received by the Math Team, and
- the many 4-H Clubs awards and prizes over the years.
- Some of you might say that you didn’t get those awards. As long as you are here you share in those awards.
Charge to students
- Let me tell you about a story from Aesop’s fables which highlights the need for us to always work together:
An old man who was dying and called his sons to him. He gave his eldest son a bundle of sticks and said, “Break it”. The son used all his might but could not break it. His other son tried as well but couldn’t either. The old man had them untie the bundle of sticks. Then he said, “Now break it”. Each stick was easily broken. “You see my meaning?”, said the father. Union gives strength.
(Together we aspire)
- Each of you brings value to this school. Together you are stronger. Together, teachers and students can make great success.
- It’s not easy being a child. Many times it seems no one understands what you are saying and when you try to explain it makes it worse. Have you ever had that experience?
- There are also many distractions to keep you from doing your homework or studying. I know sometimes there are some good cartoons on after school or video games or surfing the internet on your phone, tablet or computer or just playing with your friends. All those things are fun but must be done with limits. You can do even more:
- Don’t just watch the cartoons, create your own – draw with pen and paper and design on your computer.
- Do you like video games? Then study computer programming and learn how they make them.
- Learn to create apps for you phone or your tablet that can help you and others.
- You are not too young to learn. You are all born in the technological era.
- I am told you are learning great responsibility in caring for the pets that each of your classrooms has. You are also learning to be caring and nurturing just like your parents and teachers are to you.
- I believe in each and every one of you. I started an organization called the I Believe Initiative because I believe in all the children of Jamaica. What you dream you can achieve. I support that with my whole heart.
- I grew up in rural Jamaica, now I am the Governor General. My imagination never even stretched this far. I worked hard, at times I might have even been mischievous, but my parents believed in me and most importantly I believed in me.
- Believe in yourself and what God can do in your life.
- Reverend Lewis, I could not end my remarks without commending the All Saints Anglican Church for standing by Chester Castle All-Age and Infant School for the 149 years since its inception. Almost a century and a half of education and training based on a rock solid religious foundation is deserving of applause.
- I am going to give the opportunity for three random students to ask me a question, whether about life at Kings House or any burning question you would like to ask me.