Press Release

House of Assembly
Release Date:
Friday, 8 March 2024 - 5:15pm

On Friday, 8th March, the Grade 5 students of the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School had the unique opportunity to participate in a Special Sitting of the House of Assembly. Led by Teacher Candia McFarlane, 19 students engaged in a mock legislative session where they proposed constitutional changes aimed at benefiting the Virgin Islands.

In this simulated scenario, each student had recently been elected as Premier of the Virgin Islands and was tasked with proposing two constitutional changes. These proposals outlined the responsible branch of government and allocated budget amounts necessary for implementation.

The genesis of this extraordinary collaboration occurred when the Speaker of the House, Honourable Corine George-Massicote, was invited to the school to hear the presentations by the students but recognised the potential for a more enriching and meaningful experience for the students if they were to present their ideas within the hallowed halls of the legislative building.

The session, designed to mirror an authentic sitting of the House of Assembly, was orchestrated with precision. The Honourable Corine George-Massicote, presided over the proceedings. The Clerk, Deputy Clerk, and Sargeant-at-Arms assumed their regular roles, contributing to the realism of the event.

Distinguished guests in attendance included the Minister for Education, Youth Affairs and Sports, Honourable Sharie de Castro; Leader of the Opposition, Honourable Ronnie W. Skelton; Junior Minister for Culture and Tourism, Honourable Luce D. Hodge-Smith; and Member for the Third District, Honourable Julian Fraser.

During the session, Honourable Fraser expressed his delight in seeing a school from his district pioneering such an initiative. Minister de Castro commended the young students, particularly noting the significance of females’ participation on International Women's Day. Both Honourable Hodge-Smith and Honourable Skelton offered words of encouragement to the students before the Leader of the Opposition motioned to adjourn the House.

This immersive experience not only provided students with a deeper understanding of governance but also encouraged critical thinking and public speaking skills. Teacher Candia McFarlane expressed her gratitude for the opportunity, emphasising the importance of practical learning experiences in shaping well-rounded individuals.

The Ebenezer Primary School's Mock Sitting marks a significant milestone in the House of Assembly’s commitment to engaging with the community in preparing students for active citizenship.


Linton Leonard

Public Relations Officer
Office of the House of Assembly
Telephone: 468-6900 ext. 6958