Three girls have tied for first place in this year's Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) exam.
Eshanaa Maharaj of El Dorado North Hindu School in Tacarigua, Meagan De La Bastide of St Monica's Preparatory School in Port of Spain and Sushma Karim of San Fernando TML School in San Fernando all top scored in the March 27 exam.
At El Dorado North Hindu School yesterday morning, Education Minister Hazel Manning created a stir among the teaching and pupils when she arrived around 8 a.m. to break the news to 12-year-old Maharaj and her parents. Maharaj was placed in her first school of choice, Lakshmi Girls Hindu College.
In addition to Maharaj's achievement, six other pupils at the school also placed in the top 100.
Proclaiming the day "a very auspicious and historic one" for the school, principal Dave Harrysingh said the school had two reasons to celebrate-Maharaj's placement, as well as the 54th wedding anniversary of Secretary General of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha (SDMS), Sat Maharaj and his wife.
In a brief address, Sat Maharaj said the success of an individual was a combined effort of many factors which included the dedication and commitment of the teachers, parents, students, and administration.
Prompting a loud round of applause from the entire school as she broke the news of Maharaj's placement when she delivered congratulatory remarks, Manning said all 56 pupils who wrote the exam at the school "did well".
Hugging Maharaj as she accepted her certificate, Manning agreed that the tone of the school spoke of discipline, good organisation, well mannered children, hard-working teachers and a lot of dedication.
Appealing to the parents, teachers and male students to work extra hard to achieve the same top-level placements as their female counterparts, Manning said "we need to work with them".
The two standard five teachers, Rishi Ramsingh and Sunil Sagram, later said while they were expecting great results from their young charges, they never dreamed of such an achievement so soon.
Revealing that he had made a friendly wager with his pupils, Ramsingh said he had told them he would give $100 to each student who placed in the top 100, and a further $700 to the student who placed first. Acknowledging that he would "be in the red" this month, Ramsingh said, "the one time they should not have listened to me they did".
Eshanaa's father, Satesh said his daughter had always demonstrated an exceptional level of intelligence right through from preschool to primary school, and endorsed Sat Maharaj's comments that it was the efforts of all involved, that was responsible for his daughter's success.
The beaming parents said a lot of prayers and long nights went into preparing Eshanaa, but that they also took great pains to ensure that she also maintained extra curricular activities
School manager, Raj Jadoo, said this was now a flagship primary school of the SDMS, and that the organisation would be striving to ensure it stayed this way every year.
See any niggas in that pic? Im sure if you see the list wid the top 100 yuh might hardly find any.
Now where are the lil fockin nigglets? Probably learnin to teef, run and kidnap fockin Indian people.
Wey the niggas, ah say wey the niggas??