Latara Boodie: Senior Youthlink Writer
Did you know that York Castle High School was the first rural school to win the Schools' Challenge Quiz in 1971? Hmm, what else didn't you know? Youthlink has the inside scoop on York Castle High this week, so continue reading for more details.
York Castle High is located in Brown's Town, St Ann, and serves the secondary and post-secondary educational needs of four parishes, including St Ann, St Mary, Clarendon and Trelawny. This seven-year government grant-aided, church-owned public school enrolls approximately 1,350 students from grades seven to 13. York Castle was first established by the Methodist Church in Jamaica in 1876 in the little town of Alderton, close to Claremont, St Ann's Bay, but financial challenges forced the Methodist Church to close the school down. However, in 1957, the church decided to re-establish a new secondary school in Brown's Town in honor of the old York Castle School.
A York Castle High student must have the following core values: Divinity of God, learning and scholastic achievement, creativity and industry, resilience, excellence and integrity, self-affirmation and empowerment, courage and determination.
Vice-principals Mrs Antoinette Brown-Edwards and Mr Seaton Jackson.
Facts you may not have known about York Castle High
1. It is the first high school in Jamaica to introduce driver education in its curriculum.
2. It is one of the top-performing rural schools in cricket and basketball.
3. It won the Rita Marley Foundation National Public Speaking Competition in 2016.
4. It won the Burger King National Inter-School Debating Competition in 2016.
5. In 2015, York Castle High School teachers won the TVET Teacher of the Year Award, Lasco Teacher of the Year Award and the Principal of the Year (First Runner-Up) Award.
6. It ranks among the top 15 high-performing schools in Jamaica, with 95% of graduates leaving the school with five or more subjects, including English language.
7. Deon Hemmings-McCatty, who was the first Caribbean woman to win an Olympic gold medal, attended York Castle High School.
'Nil Sine Magno Labore'
With the bee as its mascot, York Castle students are cultured to know that 'Nothing is achieved without hard work'.