By DAYO ADESULU
“The excellence of a school is not a product of an individual’s effort but achieved by the collective responsibilities of its proprietors, staff, parents and the students whose sense of duty has never be in doubt.
It is therefore a great moment for all of us who have continued to be associated with this school which was founded in 1951 by expatriates and ran solely as a foundation school for their wards who were to proceed with their study in Europe but has since been turned to purely a Nigerian School training Nigerian children to excel in future,”
That was the statement of St. Saviour’s Schools Board of Trusty Chairman, Mr. Louise Mbanefo, a senior advocate of Nigeria and son of the former Attorney General and Minister of Justice in the old Eastern Region when he was excited with the achievement of the school in the last sixty years.
Celebrating its diamond jubilee, Mbanefo noted that St Saviour’s School, Ebute-Metta, is a foundation school established precisely on the 23rd of April, 1951, in the Nigerian Railway Corporation’s compound and a twin sister of the Ikoyi chapter which also kicked off some months after April. According to him, it is the first non profit primary trust school to be opened in Nigeria and run by a church saying that it is not out of tune to say that St Saviour’s graduates are either found in school’s like Loyola Jesuits in Abuja, Atlantic Hall in Lagos, Olasore School in Iloko Ijesha and in famous schools in Europe and America because the standard here is unbeatable and our students are made for the best.
The sixty years celebration held at the classy Federal Palace Hotel, Lagos also drew the attention of Lagos State Executive Chairman of State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Mrs. Khadijat Dawodu who disclosed to the audience the donation of furniture by St Saviour School to public schools within its environment adding that it was a challenge that was worthy of emulation by other viable schools.
The Head Teacher, Mrs Ailsa Griffiths, in her goodwill message restated her commitment to give her acquired thirty years teaching experience in primary education to the school to boost the academic and moral lives of the pupils. As a South African who resumed office three months ago, she said: I am proud and fortunate to be part of the historic event.
The event which was to round off a month-long anniversary celebration which began with cultural display, tree planting and jubilee walk, anniversary church service and children ball was a huge success.
The Aremu of Lagos State, Chief Fola Awobo-Pearse in his comment said that 60 years in the life of a school is no mean feat how much more for a non-profit making school that has been growing from strength to strength since its establishment.
The occasion at the Federal Palace Hotel was used for fund raising to achieve the construction of its desired diamond jubilee resource centre which the school promised will house four-number classrooms, two state-of-the-art libraries, one well-equipped art studio and two music rooms.
Even Lagos State Government made a pledge.
At the announcement of donation, Mr Kayode Sofola (SAN) donated the sum of one million naira, the notable lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria noted that his relationship with the school is inseparable because all his four children attended the school where their moral uprightness and academic excellence were formed.
Guests also included the business mogul and pool magnate, Adebutu Kessington, His Royal Highness, Oba Kola Ibiyemi, the Alara of Araromi Oke-Odo, Ife; Mr. Charles Mbanefo, a consultant nephrologist and internal medicine specialist, Engr. Gerald Franklin, Mr. Osaro Eghobamien (SAN) among others.