#Freeport, Grand Bahama – October 6, 2020 – With the support of the Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) Limited, Genesis Academy’s Principal, Dr. Ricardo Major, and his staff will restart in-person lessons at the facility in late November.
Genesis Academy offers Programme S.U.R.E. (Success Ultimately Reassures Everybody), a subset of the Government of The Bahamas’ Ministry of Education (MOE). The Programme is tailored to troubled teens who are trying to refocus on their education and obtain their high school diplomas in Grand Bahama. With six trained, specialized staff, Genesis helps mainstream students who are recovering from substance abuse, criminal rehabilitation, and other needs not applicable to a regular classroom. It offers small classes, low teacher/student ratios and provides students with individualized access to academic development, behaviour therapy, social interaction and experiential training services.
“For over 20 years, the GBPA has provided this facility for the Ministry of Education, as well as supporting the Academy’s after-school programs and projects that help to guide these students back into mainstream life and become productive citizens,” said Dr. Major. “On behalf of the Ministry, we appreciate the value the Port Authority sees in our Programme. They have supported our Academy 100% and believe in these students who, with our help, will become great members of the community.”
Genesis is located in the Children’s Village near the Grand Bahama Children’s Home in Freeport and was inundated with floodwater during Hurricane Dorian. The flooding destroyed most of the interior, and the roof and the students’ agriculture and aquaponics systems were also significantly impacted. “We hope to have the aquaponics area rebuilt, as learning agriculture is a great outlet for our students and creates innovative opportunities for them,” added Dr. Major.
With the work of the GBPA’s reconstruction team and G&T Construction, the building refurbishment is almost complete and awaiting final inspection with the Building & Development Services Department. With MOE Superintendent approval, it will reopen soon, and Genesis students will start school shortly after via smaller classrooms at current public schools, and then will move back into their facility in late fall.
“Every child deserves a second chance,” said Sarah St. George, GBPA Acting Chairman. “Dr. Major and his team have helped rehabilitate many a wayward teen who just needed that little bit more time, that little bit more attention and care. I believe in supporting our youth; they are our future, so we must do everything we can to help guide them through tough times. No child should feel forgotten. We will continue to support the after-school programs such as chess, aquaponics, carpentry and traditional agricultural programs because it makes a huge difference. We know our support helps these children become better citizens for our home, our city and our island.”