80.7 F
Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, June 25, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesJohn's Folly Learning Institute Celebrates 10th Year

John's Folly Learning Institute Celebrates 10th Year

April 8, 2006 – With a new sign on the front gate and lots of good cheer inside, the John's Folly Learning Institute celebrated its 10th anniversary on Saturday.
Speaker after speaker heaped praise on president Alvis Christian and his board for their good works.
"Alvis and the board didn't wait for the government," Lt. Gov. Vargrave Richards said.
Christian received a standing ovation from the more than 100 people gathered at John's Folly for the event.
Ten years ago, Christian and Coral Bay area residents picked up their shovels to clear out the long-abandoned Horace Mann School. From that big step, they scraped, painted and prayed for funding to help them along. And they sold many, many pounds of potato salad and fried chicken to raise money for building improvements and the school's programs.
Master of ceremonies Amos Carty said that when he first saw the building it was covered in bush. "And there was a horse out front," he said, laughing.
Carty noted that Christian successfully navigated his way through the bush and the government bureaucracy that went with getting the school on its feet.
St. John Administrator Julien Harley spoke about Christian's persuasiveness in getting people involved with the institute. Harley said Christian drew from the both the white and black community to find people who were willing to help.
"That's the way we were brought up. And the Institute is bringing it back," Harley said.
Christian, speaking about the children who attend the after-school and summer programs at John's Folly, said about 50 percent are on the honor roll.
He introduced two police officers who are now staffing the Coral Bay station. Officer Delvin Fleming said that when he and officer Adrien Huggins starting digging around in the Coral Bay area's crime problem, they learned that children were involved.
Fleming said they when they looked for solutions, Christian's name always came up.
The two then started teaching diving to the John's Folly students.
Delegate to Congress Donna M. Christensen said that in recent discussions with the territory's youth she learned that young men want a place to meet their friends and get help with their homework.
She said the Institute filled that need.
Carrying a sign that read "Are the children really our future?" Lorelei Monsanto used Richards' presence to protest conditions at Guy Benjamin School in Coral Bay. She said portions of the school had no electricity for eight days.
Richards promised that a maintenance crew would be at the school Monday to make repairs. He said the problem lies in the fact that the Education Department doesn't have a maintenance crew based on St. John.
Making light of the fact that he had to deal with this issue during a celebration, he told a story of how he was accosted by an elderly woman while waiting to take communion during a Sunday church service.
"She said 'Sonny, I know this isn't the place for it, but the road up there is too bad,'" he said, drawing laughter from the audience.

Back Talk

Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.




Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.



STAY CONNECTED

20,771FansLike
4,751FollowersFollow

FROM FACEBOOK

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons
This message is only visible to admins.
Problem displaying Facebook posts.
Error: Server configuration issue