San Pedro High School Belize
San Pedro High School is a private/government aided secondary school on the island of Ambergris Caye, Belize. Ambergris Caye is 36 miles north of Belize City on the mainland and only 15 minutes away by airplane, 1 hour by speed boat.
San Pedro High is the only high school on this island (29 total in country) and it offers quality education to the natives (the San Pedranos) and to students from all over the country whose parents come to live in San Pedro mostly to work on tourism or construction.
San Pedro High was founded in 1971 at a time when only 2 students from he island were attending high school in the city on the mainland. San Pedro High was established to break away from this pattern and provide the opportunity for a wider sector of the community. It started with 30 students and graduated 9 in its first graduation. Today the enrollment is of 200 with an average graduating class of 30.
The island is growing rapidly in tourism and job opportunities are being opened at a rapid pace.
San Pedro High has been training young people to join the work force mostly in the business sector. Students who wish to specialize, move on to tertiary level of education in a program known in Belize as sixth form (junior college). Thereafter there is a fledging university known as UCB - Universtiy College of Belize.
San Pedro High now own its own campus and building. It is run in a 2 storey ferro-concrete building with 2 offices, a teachers offices, 6 classrooms, a music room, a science laboratory, typing room, computer laboratory, library, lobby and even a teachers' quarters.
The first two years of high school grades 9 and 10 offer general courses including: English Language, English grammar and Literature, Spanish, Mathematics, Social Studies, Religion, History, General Science and Music and or band. The next 2 years (grades 11 and 12) are specialized in Commercial or Academic courses. Commercial students take Principles of Business, Accounting, Office Procedures, and Typewriting. The Academics take Chemistry, Biology and all take Mathematics, English, Literature, Religion, Spanish, Principles of Business, plus Computer studies (mostly applications of word processing, spreadsheets, and database.)
Students attend 40 minute classes of which there are 8 periods each day, 5 times a week. The school year begins late August and runs for 36 weeks. Students can sign up for 1 or 2 extra curricular subjects such as band, music, choir, yearbook, newspaper, drama, and environmental club. In the night, adults may take computers, and beginning Spanish.
In sports students may participate in basketball, soccer, softball, and volleyball. An average of 78 percent is required for students to participate in the school's teams.
Students are promoted by passing most of their subjects and obtaining a composite average of 70%. Mathematics and English are compulsory subjects and passes required.
Discipline at San Pedro High is not a big problem. Childish behavior, some irresponsibility and minor offences are punishable with a demerit system and punishments after school hours. At 30 demerits, a student may be suspended and parents called in . A second suspension may be an expulsion. San Pedro High has an emphasis in preparing students for the job world. Others are prepared for external examinations for tertiary level education and are equivalent to Cambridge University level in England. Students pay about 50 US dollars monthly for tuition and other activity fees. For Belizeans, the government covers 30 dollars of these fees. Our day is divided into 2 sessions - Monday 8-12 and afternoon 1-3. Most students walk or ride home for lunch break. There are many vendors who provide lunches near the school.
Wish List from the High School after Hurricane Keith
Greetings from SPHS! Here is a wish list of items that we could use after Keith gave us a little trouble...
1. Any cash for building repairs.
2. Small generator for lighting.
3. Sporting equipment - volleyball, soccer, softball, basketball, tennis balls, and ping pong.
4. Brother typewriters ribbon (ML 100 typewriters) and daisy wheel.
5. Bubble jet cartridege for Canon 2000 - BJC21 and BJC21e
6. Panasonic KX - FA136 - ink film for fax machine
7. used ecycloepedia set
8. art supplies, brushes, acrylic inks
9. musical keyboards, guitars (electric), small amplifiers, power amplifiers, small mixing board amplifier.