The Bahamas Primary School Student of the Year Awards Programme is a premier national awards recognition programme for 6th graders in The Bahamas. The programme was introduced by Ricardo P. Deveaux – Distinguished Charter President of the Nassau, Bahamas Pan-Hellenic Council and was designed to salute the achievements of our younger achievers.
In November 1996, the idea of a Student of the Year program was submitted to the Council for acceptance. The competition immediately received its endorsements from four educators who were serving as Executive Council Members at the time: Sharon Poitier (Alpha Kappa Alpha), Anastacia Brown (Delta Sigma Theta), Carolynn Hall-Knowles (Delta Sigma Theta) and Garnell Rolle (Zeta Phi Beta); and The Nassau, Bahamas Pan-Hellenic Council. The program also received the endorsement of Senator Dame Dr. Ivy Dunmont – Minister of Education (later Her Excellency Governor-General of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas.)
A committee was formed and Ms. Anasticia Brown was selected as the Committee Chairperson. The Council selected June 9th, 1997 as the date for the first Bahamas Primary Student of the Year awards program. Thirty-one (31) students representing private and public school students in New Providence were the first nominees in the awards ceremony. The ceremony was held at the Ballroom at Government House with Their Excellencies Sir Orville Turnquest – Governor-General and Lady Edith Turnquest in attendance. In his remarks, The Governor-General challenged the Council to include students from the Family islands in future ceremonies. Vashti Darling, a ten year old sixth grade student of St. John’s College was selected as the 1997 Primary School Student of the Year.
Since 1998, Family Island students have participated in the awards program. Now in its fourteenth year, The Bahamas Primary School Student of the Year Awards Program continues to recognize students who are academically gifted, civic and compus leaders, and community volunteers. Atlantic Medical Insurance was the first major sponsor of The Bahamas Primary School Student of the Year, presenting a id="mce_marker",0000 scholarships in 1998.
Since the inception of the awards program in 1997, one thousand and eighty-three (1,083) students have been recognized among the “Who’s Who in Primary Schools in The Bahamas” and over $410,000.00 awarded in scholarships and prizes.