St. Joseph's Convent, San Fernando

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San Fernando, San Fernando
Port of Spain Trinidad and Tobago

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St Joseph's Convent, St Joseph, Trinidad and Tobago, founded in 1870 was for many years a privately run school, providing religious education for children of both primary and secondary ages. Few records of the early years of the boarders (mainly Venezuelans) lived in the garret of the three-storey wooden building. The school was founded and is run by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Cluny. The foundress was Anne-Marie Javouhey. The sisters' publicly professed vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, and lived in community. The earliest recorded Principals of the school were Sr. Anthony Eagney who retired in 1943 and Sr. Magdalen Mathieu from 1944 to 1946. When Sr Mel Kenny took up the post of Principal in 1947, there were 75 children on roll, mainly from the St Joseph area. This enrolment increased annually, but especially in 1953 when the private Secondary School in Curepe was closed and the Convent began to admit students from that area as well. There were 223 children on roll. As the school was not yet registered, in December 1203, when two students were presented for the Cambridge School Certificate, they were entered at St Joseph's Convent, Port of Spain. In April 1954, the school was registered as a Private School with a student-body of 385. In December 1955, the boarders' section of the school was closed for lack of personnel and in 1957 a new school was built to accommodate the increased numbers seeking admission. The school was formally blessed on 5 March by Archbishop Finbar Ryan and accorded the status of a Government-assisted Secondary School with Sr Mel Kenny as the first Principal. Sr Theresa Corbie succeeded Sr Mel in 1963 and was followed by Sr Anne Marie Rodriguez in 1973, ably assisted by her Vice-Principal Mrs Thomasine Elie who had replaced Sr Anne Marie during her periods of absence form the school. In 1961 the first students were presented for A level GCE Examinations, offering a wide range of subjects. The school is now dedicated to educating young women from first form to sixth form. Both the Lower and Upper 6th forms contain a select few young men, primarily from Holy Cross College, its brother school, who are unable to complete their Advanced level education at Holy Cross College but male students from other schools are also accepted. Previous principals of the school include, Mrs. Huggins,Sr Philip Geofroy who replaced Mrs. Hazel B Reis in late 2002.Mrs. Claire Norville took over as Acting Principal in 2006. The Acting principal was Mrs. Mary Lochan who took over in Mid 2007.The current principal is Mrs. Donna Reyes who took over late 2007 and the current vice-principal is Mrs. Margot Guerrero.

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