Name change proposed for DBS Ministry of Education School Reading Competition

Manager of DBS Radio Cecil Joseph is suggesting a name change for the DBS Radio Ministry of Education National Reading competition next year.

Joseph, who was addressing a prize giving ceremony for the competition held at Windsor Park Sports Stadium last week, said he believes the event may have to be called a symposium or an exhibition rather than a competition.

DBS Manager, Cecil Joseph

“I have realized in the competition for many years that at the end of the competition, our children cry when they don’t make the finals or they are not in the top 3 or four and that is emotional..,” he said. “And next year, I would like to send this message very early to the organizers, DBS and the Ministry of Education that we may have to now call the programme either a symposium or an exhibition.”

He continued, “Because when we hear the children in the finals, we know that they are exhibiting the ability to read and it is good we can start our children at a very early age to compete.”

Joseph thanked the schools who have allowed their students to participate in the competition.

“As we move forward we are hoping that the other schools or other students who did not make it this year start practicing, start getting themselves ready, because next year at the same time it will be a continuation of the reading symposium or reading exhibition,” he said.

Senior Education Officer, Robert Guiste called on parents to read with their children.


“Parents read to your children; read with your children,” he advised. “Don’t just give them a book and watch TV, or don’t give them a book and you are in a corner on your phone chatting.”

Guiste added, “Spend time with your children; spend time with them and let them know what is expected of them, work with them, work with their school.”

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Chandler Hyacinth also encouraged parents to continue to work with their children, elaborating on Guiste’s message.

She also called on the schools to continue the Creole cause.

“Simple phrases, simple words, get them to pronounce it; get them to spell it; get them to be able to use it,” Hyacinth urged parents. “It doesn’t have to be much, small bites and they will get it and come next year, we will be able to see them exhibiting what they would have learnt over the year in Creole.”

She added, “Spend time with them and provide them with the kind of environment that will help them to succeed.”

Cheques and laptops were presented to the top four students and schools in the competition.

Brittany Lewis of the Convent Preparatory School who won this year’s competition, received $2750, Qitara Beaupierre of the Pioneer Preparatory School placed 2nd and received $1500. Hailey Bedneau of the Salisbury Primary School was rewarded with a $900 prize for taking 3rd place and D’Andre Barrie of the Ebenezer SDA Primary School who copped the 4th position received $750. They were also presented with other prizes.

Cheques were also presented to the finalists of the competition.

The finalists are as follows: Jonelle Carbon of the Castle Bruce Primary School, Eliz Charles of the W.S Stevens Primary School, Sa’Jani Alexander of the Soufriere Primary School, Divanie Pascal of the Lighthouse Christian Academy, Naimanaelle Azard of the St Luke’s Primary and Kaelan Matthew of the St Mary’s Primary School.

DBS Radio, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, held its first National Reading Competition on July 2nd, 2008, in order to inspire children to read for today and tomorrow.

The reading competition was the brainchild of the late iconic broadcaster and creole legend Felix Henderson.

The Headline Sponsor of the competition was the Office of the Prime Minister.

DBS Radio will be celebrating 50 years of existence on the 1st November 2021.

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  1. Cry baby
    July 22, 2021

    Well said. I was about to make the same comment but you went ahead of me. Let them cry. Maybe their parents will see their own no involvement in their children education and step up. We need competition as in everything else. Or let’s not have a “cricket test match ” because it breaks my heart to see Big Men /losers cry.

  2. Jules Vert
    July 21, 2021

    None of the comments so far are about reading. Reading is not enunciation, which is what the competition seems to be about. You cannot test someone’s reading skills by listening to them read a text. If I read a text quietly and understood it, I have read better than the person who said all those words allowed but has no idea of what they mean. Calling this exercise a reading competition is really a misnomer.

    • If we knew better
      July 26, 2021

      while you have a point, id go further to state that is only a reading competition, not a reading and COMPREHENSION competition. I am assuming this event was simply to test their reading skills; fluency, pronunciation, etc, but not whether they understand what they just read.

  3. Someone
    July 21, 2021

    That’s a mouthful of crap. In any case, it should be named after the late Felix Henderson. Ki DBS? Who they calling that?

  4. Bee
    July 20, 2021

    Cecil I have to disagree with you there. As human beings, we all face disappointments sometimes in life. It is quite ok for the children to be disappointed and cry. They will learn from it and move on (hopefully) to do better next time.
    They will learn that sometimes they will win and other times they will loose.
    Additionally, as part of their preparation for the event, their teachers should also prepare them for the possibility that they may not emerge victorious in the competition but ca la vie.

    What jab symposium!

  5. smart
    July 20, 2021

    I think that the reading competition, should be held among the weakest readers in each school. They would be given help and practice over a set period of time. This would encourage them to read. So then we would be able to see an improvement in reading. Most of the time, its just the brightest children who are in the reading competition, they can already read.

    • Ibo France
      July 20, 2021

      Not a very good suggestion although your intention is honorable. Putting a child to read in front of a crowd and he/she has difficulty deciphering hasic words would lead to humiliation and might be damaging to the child’s self esteem. Those students need one and one (individual) attention from a reading specialist.

      • %
        July 21, 2021

        @Ibo France
        That’s a very good point..Children will also use the opportunity to harrass them in and out of school about their reading deficiencies. This will cause more harm than good.

    • Toto
      July 21, 2021

      Not so smart, it would be known as competition for dummies. Children can be very cruel.

  6. Ibo France
    July 20, 2021

    What polish does to the shoe reading does to the brain. Research has shown that voracious readers usually excel in school and beyond. I too would like to encourage parents to get their children involved in reading at an early age.

    Having said that, I feel compelled to say this. DBS belongs to the STATE. What belongs to the STATE belongs to all Dominicans. Why is it only Skerrit and the DLP thugs are given unrestrained access to this public entity? This radio station is used disgracefully as an electronic machine for the dissemination of the corrupt ruling regime’s tall tales and nasty rhetoric. It is more of a liability than an asset to the STATE as it is used to further the political fragmentation of the country.

    • Northern Boy
      July 21, 2021

      …and look which children received awards. To my knowledge they are all children of known DLP enthusiasts. I refuse to enter my children in this predetermined charade. Lucky enough My family is not reliant in any shape or form of bribes and handouts of this regime and all those companies that are attached to it. I. Am also very selective where I take my business nowadays. If can help it, but it’s not always possible, I do not frequent enterprises that belong to DLP supporters.

  7. If we knew better
    July 20, 2021

    Man Cecil rubbish you talking there. I suspect it was meant to be a joke, but a bad one at that. Call it whatever you want. the children will still know it is a competition and they will still cry if they not in the top 3. i hate nonsense from big people.

    • Ibo France
      July 20, 2021

      My brother, Cecil just shows us how daft he is. How does changing the name change this event from being a competition? Some people don’t have anything to say but have to say something.

      • Pipo
        July 20, 2021

        Amen Ibo, children must also learn that to win there must also be a loser but we should no disrespect the loser because without him or her you cannot be a winner. Let children develop to the best of their ability and encourage that all the way. Winners are role models, not to show off but to emulate.That is the mission of teaching, period

        • Ibo France
          July 20, 2021

          Mr. Joseph might next suggest that we should not use the word ‘debate’ with secondary school students use ‘talk show’ instead. Ridiculous man.

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