Liberia: VP Howard-Taylor Frowns on MTM Closure, Assures Graduates of School’s Re-opening
Monrovia —The Vice President of the Republic of Liberia Jewel Howard-Taylor has assured the graduates and administrators of the More Than Me (MTM) Academy that she is leading the charge to ensure the reopening of the Institution in the country.
The assurance by the Vice President, according to a release from the office of the Vice President, followed a decision by the Institution’s Board of Directors of the charity organization on the closure of the organization’s operations which took effective June 30, 2019.
The MTM Board, in a statement issued recently, said the decision to shut down its operations in Liberia was reached as a result of the huge financial burden on the organization due to the MTM’s inability to raise funds as well as its consideration of the recommendations from the McLane Middleton and independent panel report.
VP Howard-Taylor however views the School as a public institution that needs and deserves regular public support to keep it operational. She, therefore, urged Montserrado District number 7 Representative Solomon George to join her in the campaign to ensure that the school does not remain closed in the wake of diminishing international donor support.
The More Than Me Academy, now called “HILLTOP School,” is located on Ashmun Street within District # 7 in Montserado County.
Speaking Wednesday, August 14, 2019, at the HILLTOP School’s Inaugural Graduation ceremony held at the Monrovia City Hall, VP Howard-Taylor, serving as the keynote speaker, informed graduates that she will work along with lawmakers so as to whip up support for the reopening of the More Than Me Academy.
Said VP Howard-Taylor Taylor, “I am calling on District #7 Representative, Solomon George, as we look at the national budget, we need to support institutions that encourage public education and I think that the MTM is one of those institutions that we need to protect.”
She furthered that she will engage the Speaker and Representatives of the House to see how they can help get the School up and running again.
The First Female Liberian Vice President emphasized that the girls graduating from the 9th grade need opportunities to continue their education, stressing that education gives confidence and helps one to access unusual opportunities and a clear vision for life.
In addition to confidence, the Liberian Vice President identified competence, integrity, hard work and diligence as key attributes for success which she noted must be exhibited by the current generation of Liberians.
She further promised to lead a charge to form a coalition in order to secure a scholarship program for the willing students to attend the Ricks Institute in Virginia, outside Monrovia.
VP Howard-Taylor disclosed that the cost for each girl’s per annum upkeep is about US$2,000 which includes the school fees, uniforms and supplies, noting that it is her hope that the students and others will join the endeavor to assist these promising young people complete their high school education.
Meanwhile, VP Howard-Taylor has lauded the Administration and staff of More Than Me Academy for their patience and understanding which has brought the school this far.
Speaking earlier, the Executive Director of HILLTOP School, Madam Margretta Smith, applauded the Vice President for her kind gesture toward the graduates for offering to lead this noble charge for the reopening of this vital Institution.
Madam Smith, however, thanked the teachers and parents who stood by the institution during its difficult times and encourage the students to keep studying hard and remain focused on pursuing their education.