Published: July 11th 2012July 11th 2012
I think I was on the telly last night! On Saturday we had the Region 6 Teachers awards and the event was featured in the evening news. I had to attend to present the award for best ECD teacher of the year. Over the last few weeks I and many of the other staff in the office have been verifying teacher’s nominations as I trekked around the schools. However, the actual oraginsation of the day happened in typical Gambian fashion i.e. there’s plenty of time to get things done... don’t worry about it... oh god it’s tomorrow, we’d better get something orgainsed. I’d been out of the office all week trekking with FIOH so I managed to pretty much stay out of the way of things but poor old Eleanor was stressed to death with it.
The ceremony was scheduled to start at 9am. We were still waiting for the important people; the deputy PS and the Minister of Education, to arrive at 11am and it was a good thing too because we weren’t ready at all. Eventually we got started and all was going well, people were sticking to their scripts and not hogging the stage for too long until the Minister herself got up. It was an impromptu speech so was made up on the spot and therefore went on for about an hour. Lunch was given out half way through and she still didn’t take the hint. Mr Jallow the compare of the day even commented at the end that they should have made people write and stick to their speeches.
The thing that I was looking forward to was a performance by the local secondary school, St George’s. They’d rehearsed the day before in mine and Eleanor’s office so I knew it was good. Not only were the kids fantastic actors their play (which they had written themselves) addressed issues like early marriage and FGM brilliantly. Unfortunately as the Minsters speech took so long their performance slot was taken over so they couldn’t do it. It would have been a travesty had they not dared to storm the stage near the end of the ceremony. We’d got to the last award and suddenly one of the girls burst through the door in character and they all got on with their play. Brilliant!!! They then apologised at the end for interrupting proceedings but they felt that they were raising such important issues that they had to do it. How cool is that! I was so proud of them and made the shambles of the rest of the occasion worth it.