Saint Lucia
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Edwards: Too Many Students Loitering On The Streets – St. Lucia Times News

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Education Minister Shawn Edward says the problem of student loitering needs a multi-pronged approach.

He told principals at a meeting on Thursday that Ministry officials, principals and the police have a role.

But Edward declared that ultimately, the parents have a role.

He made reference to an incident involving students stabbing each other with ‘long knives but did not go into details.

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The Minister disclosed that he had visited the hospital to ascertain the situation but had not yet received the police report.

In addition, the Dennery North MP recalled driving through the City recently, noticing a’ particular situation’ and lowering his tinted windows to take a snapshot.

He said some children recognised him, and one shouted: “That’s the Minister!”

However, Edward said while some walked away, others indicated that he could do nothing.

He explained that he was not in the mood for confrontation and did not believe that his role as Minister was to patrol City streets asking children to go home.

At the same time, he asserted that as a responsible adult before Minister, if he happens to observe a situation where children need to disperse, he does not have to be Minister to ask them to do so and find their way home.

Nevertheless, Edward explained that the Ministry of Education or the Minister could not solve the loitering problem, which needs a multi-pronged approach.

And in underscoring the ultimate role of parents, Edward explained that he has a son.

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“If you are told that school dismisses at 3 O’ clock – you need to be home by 4:30, you have to be accountable to me at 5 O’ clock because you’re not home at 4:30,” the Minister declared.

“There are too many students loitering the streets and you see them at 7 O’ clock in the night in uniform and it’s as if they don’t have a home to go to and this is what you get when the social fabric of your society begins to disintegrate,” he noted.

Edward referred to the Baby Boom years when children were becoming parents.

He recalled that social policy advocates highlighted the problems that would occur in the future.

“Some persons thought that they were talking nonsense. I am afraid today that is some of what we are paying for,” Edward stated.

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