Press Release

Ministry of Education, Youth Affairs and Sports
BVI National Commission for UNESCO
Release Date:
Monday, 21 March 2016 - 4:45pm

Teachers and students were encouraged to write and teach poetry in observance of World Poetry Day today, March 21.

The BVI National Commission for UNESCO joined with students from the Elmore Stoutt High School at a general assembly and marked the occasion with presentations including poetry readings by Mr. Richard Georges, Ms. Jaedia Smith, Mr. Natalio Wheatley, and Mr. Cortez Forbes. The BVI Dance School Advanced Team also danced to music and to poetry by Mr. Cortez Forbes.

Secretary General for the BVI National Commission for UNESCO, Dr. Allison Flax-Archer said the assembly was held at the Elmore Stoutt High School to further encourage teachers and students to teach and write poetry.

Dr. Flax-Archer said, “It is the Commission’s mission to encourage persons to express themselves through poetry, whether it is through writing, music, or dance. Poetry is indeed one of the purest expressions of linguistic freedom.”

She added, “Poetry is a component of the identity of peoples and it embodies the creative energy of culture, for it can be continuously renewed.”

Students were also encouraged to participate in the day’s activities by creating poems and submitting entries for the upcoming Education Week booklet under the theme, “Instructing Every Child through Inclusive Education” and subtheme, “Education Includes Me”. 

Culture bearer and poet, Honourable Eileene L. Parsons, OBE was interviewed as part of the day’s observance.

In the interview, Mrs. Parsons shared a few of her poems and spoke on the importance of poetry and reading. The interview will be aired on Tuesday, March 22 on JTV Channel 55 at 7:30 p.m.

UNESCO celebrates World Poetry Day annually on March 21, to recognise the important role of poetry in the arts and in cultures. The first World Poetry Day was celebrated in the year 2000.

The BVI National Commission for UNESCO aims to foster partnerships in the building of peace and intercultural dialogue through education, the sciences, culture, communication and information.

For more information, persons should contact the BVI National Commission for UNESCO at telephone 468-2257 or 468-2528.


Bria Smith

Information Officer II
Department of Information and Public Relations (GIS)
Telephone: 468-2747