"Croal Street - The Axis of Evil" Viewpoint By: Joyce Sinclair
Guyana Chronicle
August 16, 2004

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There will not be another opportunity before schools reopen at the end of August to express a view and to call attention to another very worrying aspect of the lives of our young people, something which is referred to as "The Croal Street Syndrome" or "Croal Street - The Axis of Evil"

This seems worse than the Homestretch Mini-bus/ Car Race Course about which comments have been made and words of caution expressed by several concerned citizens, but alas to no avail.

Croal Street seems to be one of the main arteries to the Stabroek bus park for those who live both in the North and South of Georgetown. It would be interesting study for our social workers to visit our other cities to see whether this prevails elsewhere or whether it is a Georgetown "thing" and why.

Every afternoon, young persons in various colors of uniform are seen in Croal Street sitting on bridges of private residents or just standing in groups chatting loudly, nay boisterously in the foulest of language, much to be disturbance of the residents and or patrons of the various business near to which they assembled. Some are in their uniforms stand bracing against member of the opposite sex while they claim to be awaiting their particular mini-bus. Some stand in a very suggestive manner on the sides of bridges. There have been reports of fights and other types of brawls over members of the opposite sex... Really distasteful behavior for school girls and boys.

I'd like to invite parents of children who use this route, members of the Teaching fraternity and Education Administrators to take some time off when school reopens at the end of August to traverse this route as far down as the High Street corner, to see for themselves what transpires. It is a situation that is fast growing out of control. There are also reports of some other kinds of undesirable activities!

What is happening in the homes of these children? What values are taught?

What is happening in the schools of these children? What values are taught and enforced? The standard fixed curriculum should be made flexible enough to accommodate discussions of this nature. Is there a role for other social groups/ agencies? This characteristic reflects poorly not only on our schools but also on our city and country.

There was a time when children used to be ashamed, afraid or embarrassed to misbehave in their school uniforms for fear of being recognized or even for fear of bringing their school into disrepute. This is no longer the case.

Cleaning up of Georgetown has to take many forms and needs to involve many agencies, including the concerned ministry and all our schools.