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TCI’s Shandrique Ebanks: ‘Covid has taken our right to play’; Mills celebrates regional writing stand out



#Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – December 1, 2020 – Reading and writing are fundamentals for learning and Mills Institute in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos has determined it will elevate the profile of these foundational skills for a standard of excellence which is returning national and regional successes for the school and its students.

In 2020, Mills Institute has captured top prizes in a national essay competition hosted by grocery store conglomerate, Graceway Supermarkets.  De’Aysia Seymour and Rodney Adams won first and second place respectively in the Graceway IGA Staying Blue Essay Competition.  


Now, there is a regional first runner up and her name is Shandrique Ebanks.  With a bright smile, curious eyes and razor sharp comprehension skills, Shandrique has made her family overwhelmingly proud.

An excerpt: “covid19 has put a really big hole in our social life. We miss playing together on the monkey bars at school. This new lifestyle has taken away our rights to play. “

“I am just so proud of Shan, so very proud of her,” said her mother who is also a teacher at the school.

Mills Institute in a statement said:   “For a second year in a row Mills Institute has secured a top position in the UWI & UNICEF Caribbean Child Research Conference Essay Competition. This year, fifth grader, Shandrique Ebanks captured second place position for the school once again in the regional competition. She read her essay at the virtual conference and excerpts have been posted in the Jamaica Observer’s last week’s edition.” 


Mills Institute has excelled in the University of the West Indies and UNICEF hosted essay contest before.

“Last year the school’s sixth grader, De’Aysia Seymour was placed second in the competition, and she later traveled to Barbados to read her essay for the delegates at the conference,” informed Mills Institute.  The school also shared that another of their talented writers rounded out the top submissions, “…Shaneisa Taylor, a Grade 6 student at the school, secured a top 10 position, both in the category 8-11 years.”

The children penned their thoughts on a weighty and timely subject:   “The Impact of Covid-19 on Children.

Shandrique Ebanks

Mills Institute said they are pleased to be blazing a trail with brilliant young writers.

“We are excited to see that that the emphasis we have been placing on training our staff in the teaching of Creative Writing over the years is now paying huge dividends, our students are excelling not only locally but regionally. Congratulations to Shandrique and Shaneisa for your stellar achievements. I also commend all the other students whose essays were selected for entry in this important  competition. Continue to blaze the trail for academic achievement,” said Deputy Director Debby-Lee Mills.

Magnetic Media is a Telly Award winning multi-media company specializing in creating compelling and socially uplifting TV and Radio broadcast programming as a means for advertising and public relations exposure for its clients.


Register of Interests of the Members of the House of Assembly 



#TurksandCaicos, September 29, 2023 – The Integrity Commission advises that the Register of Interests for Members of the Turks and Caicos Islands House of Assembly, as at 31st December 2022 has been completed.

Members of the House of Assembly are required by the Turks and Caicos Islands Constitution, Section 103(2), and the Integrity Commission Ordinance (the Ordinance), as amended, Section 52(1), to file with the Commission, Statements of Registrable Interests.  The Commission would, therefore, like to inform members of the public that, it has compiled the information contained in these Statements of Registrable Interests and has produced The Register of Interests 2022 for the Members of the House of Assembly, as at 31st December 2022.

The Register of Interests 2022 is now available for public inspection at the following locations:

  1. House of Assembly in Grand Turk
  2. Office of the Premier – Grand Turk and Providenciales
  3. Office of the Integrity Commission – Grand Turk and Providenciales (during the hours of 8:30am to 4:30pm from Mondays to Thursdays and 8:00am to 4:00pm on Fridays.)
  4. Office of the District Commissioner – Middle Caicos, North Caicos, Salt Cay and South Caicos.

The Register can be viewed at these locations during normal working hours or at a time that is convenient for the respective offices.

For further information or any assistance please contact the Integrity Commission:

By telephone at:  946-1941(Grand Turk Office) or 941-7847 (Providenciales Office) By e-mail at: or

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Students not in school cite Fees as Roadblock



Dana Malcolm and Wilkie Arthur 

Editorial Staff


#TurksandCaicos, September 29, 2023 – Concerning reports are coming out of Providenciales regarding the placement of students as the new term got started.

Wilkie Arthur, Magnetic Media Court Correspondent, had the opportunity to speak with several young people who were supposed to be in school.  Instead, they were hanging out close to home, as they said they couldn’t afford the fees of the private schools they had been placed in.

Edgar Howell, Director of Education, during an August 31st press conference, had indicated that at least 26 students were awaiting assistance with placement in private high schools and 35 students were awaiting placements in primary schools.  Parents should have heard from the ministry within days.

Arthur fielded concerns from them and their families who wished to remain anonymous.

“The schools are full and they don’t have any more money to continue the [private] schools they were going to.  So, this bright September morning these children are actually just idle,” he explained.

By law (Education Ordinance 2009), all children between four and 16 years old in the Turks and Caicos Islands are considered of ‘Compulsory School Age’ meaning, they must be enrolled in an institution.

It has long been the practice of the Ministry of Education to place students in private schools and subsidize the fees when space has run out in public schools.  This year was no different.

“The Ministry continues to provide assistance to the parents through the private school subsidy program and 375 students are being assisted for the 2023/24 school year,” Howell explained.

It’s not clear if these students were a part of that number.

We have since reached out to representatives at the Turks and Caicos Ministry of Education for information on students who are not in school, how many remain unable to fit into public school classes and what provisions are in place for those students; there has been no update.

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Grand Turk residents say they suffered lack attention from TCIAA



Dana Malcolm 

Staff Writer


#TurksandCaicos, September 29, 2023 – Upgrades are underway at the JAGS McCartney International Airport but Grand Turk Residents say they were subject to subpar conditions for far too long; the comments came at a town hall meeting hosted by the Turks and Caicos Islands Airports Authority in the capital on Thursday September 21, at Dillon Hall.

“I am speaking on behalf of Grand Turk residents.  It is unacceptable for the Airports Authority to treat residents how they do,” one resident told TCIAA executives at a town hall meeting in Grand Turk.

The airport was hit during Hurricane Fiona in late 2022, resulting in a destroyed roof and serious damage to the terminals from extensive flooding plus damage to the domestic and international arrival areas, deeming the area unfit for use.

The hurricane damage last year only exacerbated the destruction wrought by previous storms including 2008’s Hurricane Ike and 2017’s Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

The JAGS McCartney International was reopened for domestic arrivals just this past June after phase one of a restoration project.  The international terminal was scheduled to open soon after but repairs are still ongoing.  Residents told TCIAA executives, the work was simply not executed quickly enough.

“The lack of attention that they paid to the JAGS McCartney Airport after the hurricane, having the residents of this island come in like we’re from a third world country for months?  It’s unacceptable for residents of this island for you all to leave us like that,” a resident maintained.

Ongoing updates include fixing the perimeter fence and parking lot as well as the fire station. Residents appeared grateful but cautiously optimistic.

“We see the plans that you have— which is good, and we hope that the next time we have a disaster we don’t have to be waiting for months [and]  be treated like that.”

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