(December 9, 2022) – The Ministry of Education today signed a contract for the completion of the Good Hope Secondary School on the East Coast of Demerara. The contract was awarded to DEEN + Partners using an Engineering, Procurement and Construction/Turnkey contract for US$2,607,879.
A drone photograph of the Good Hope Secondary School as it currently stands
The construction of this school falls under the Guyana Secondary Education Improvement Project and is being funded by the World Bank.
The Honourable Minister of Education, Priya Manickchand during her remarks recalled that in 2014 the Ministry announced that it aimed to achieve Universal Secondary Education. She said that it was during that time that funding was secured from the World Bank along with designs. However, she said that this project along with other schools only started in 2017 with many still incomplete in 2022.
Minister Manickchand explained that the Good Hope Secondary School is important because it will help to achieve Universal Secondary Education in Guyana. She said that the school will help the Ministry to accommodate more students in secondary schools and to close all primary tops on the East Coast of Demerara.
Immediately after its completion, Minister Manickchand said that 479 pupils will be placed in the school. She said that this will allow the Ministry to close the Paradise Primary Top, the Enterprise Primary Top, and the Enmore Primary Top. She said the school will also reduce overcrowding at the Cummings Lodge Secondary School, Bladen Hall Secondary School, Golden Grove Secondary School and the Plaisance Secondary School.
Further, the Education Minister said that there are currently 92 children placed at the school for 2020 who continue to be taught at different schools waiting for the Good Hope Secondary to be completed.
Minister Manickchand also spoke about the Yarrowkabra Secondary School which is on its way to completion. She said that when that school is finished it will help the Ministry to close the Hararuni Primary Top, and the Kuru Kururu Primary Top while eliminating overcrowding at the Soesdyke Secondary School.
Additionally, she said that when the Prospect Secondary School is completed, it will help to close the Covent Garden Primary Top, Providence Primary Top, Supply Primary Top, and Diamond Primary Top. The school will also eliminate the overcrowding in Covent Garden Secondary, Diamond Secondary and Houston Secondary Schools.
According to Minister Manickchand, these new schools along with the new building for the St. Rose’s High School, the extensions at East Ruimveldt Secondary, St. Winefride’s Secondary, St. Joseph’s High, Queen’s College, the Bishops’ High and the new building for the St. George’s High School, the children in Georgetown and Region Four will be able to be accommodated comfortably. Minister Manickchand said that the parents of children across Guyana can expect within the next three years to see Universal Secondary Education being achieved in Guyana so that secondary-aged children can be comfortably accommodated.
The Project Coordinator of the Guyana Secondary Improvement Project, Ms. Zorina Gafoor explained that the original contract to construct the Good Hope Secondary School was awarded in 2018 to B.K. International for US$4,082,506. Work commenced on October 15, 2018, with the original completion date being January 14, 2020. However, the Education Minister noted that the firm was unable to deliver despite benefiting from four extensions being given on March 10, 2020, May 18, 2020, June 15, 2020, and August 17, 2020. Eventually the contract with B.K. International was terminated on May 25, 2021.
She said that following the termination of the contract with B.K. International, several options were explored as it relates to procurement alternatives to ensure the school is completed.
She said that it was eventually decided to enter into a management/EPC Turnkey contract with a suitable consultant. The project was offered as a direct contract to Deen+Partners who were the supervisory consultants for the project and were familiar with what was required to complete the school. They are expected to complete all outstanding works by June 30, 2030.
Outstanding works include installation of all electrical panels and cables to complete electrical connections, installation and connection of all plumbing fittings and fixtures, completion of the fence, pavements, walkways and landscaping, general finishes to windows, doors, roof, walls and ceilings, completion of all built-in furniture, repainting of the entire facility and remedial works to all floors.