The groundbreaking ceremony for Charlestown Primary School occurred during Easter holiday in 1990. The honour for the breaking of soil was done by our late Premier, Honourable Dr. Simeon Daniel. In attendance were Mrs. Hyleta Liburd and Mrs. Alice Swanston (pictured above), who were Head Teachers of the Charlestown Infant School and the Charlestown Junior School respectively.
Our school took nearly two years complete. The architect was Mrs. Daphne Hobson and the engineer was Mr. Peter Jenkins. Funds for the building were procured from the European Development Fund in the form of a grant of $2.3MM XCD. The infant section of the school was built by MELCLA Construction while the junior wing and administrative block were built by WINWARD Construction Ltd.
Former schooling for children in the Charlestown area was first organised by church officials. Both the Anglican and the Methodist Churches had school buildings. In 1916, the government took over formal education. Students were put into 2 groups. Girls attended the Charlestown Girls School housed at the Anglican Church School building while boys attended the Charlestown Boys School located downstairs inside the Charlestown Methodist Church.
On September 10th, 1984, the introduction of having mixed genders at both schools was implemented thus producing Charlestown Infant School at St. Paul's Anglican Church Schoolroom and Charlestown Junior School at Charlestown Methodist Church Schoolroom. This was done under the leadership of Mr. Joseph Parry - Permanent Secretary of Education, Mrs. Violet Nicholls - Education Officer, as well as Head Teachers Ms. Lyndis Walters and Mrs. Joycelyn Liburd. Children ages five to seven were grouped as Infants and children ages eight-twelve were grouped as Juniors.
Some of the Head Teachers who were instrumental in laying the foundation and who workied in the Charlestown Boys & Girls and Charlestown Infant & Junior Schools are: Ms. Christobel O'Flahearty, Mr. James Kelly, Mr. Jerome Crosse, Ms. Muriel Johnson, Ms. Maude Crosse, Ms. Rovita Butler, Mr. Stanford Boncamper, Ms. Lyndis Walters, Mrs. Jocelyn Liburd, Mrs. Eileen Walwyn, Mr. Gerard Browne, Mr. Oban Lawrence, Mrs. Hyleta Liburd, Mr. Frank Morton, Mrs. Shirley Browne and Mrs. Alice Swanston.
The official opening ceremony for the Charlestown Primary School took place on school grounds on Thursday, May 28th, 1992. However, April 28th, the date when all students reported to their new school is recognised as the anniversary day. A Computer Lab and Library were added later and Commercial Kitchen and Cafeteria in 2012.
The School Meals Program, now in operation and available at many schools in Nevis, was started by a U.S. based charity. The program was later taken over by individual schools and government. In 2008, community members including Mr. Hastings Daniel, Mr. James Gaskell with the support of Chef Mark Roberts, observed many schools had an abundance of 'fast food' cooking. With their goal to create healthier school meals for the children, Chef Roberts created menus and the gentlemen partially re-equipped St. Thomas and Elizabeth Pemberton St. John's School Kitchens. At that time, Charlestown Primary School had only a small staff kitchen. Mr. Gaskell negotiated a land exchange with government, whereby his land sale proceeds were to be used to purchase new kitchen equipment for Charlestown Primary School. In combination with other community member donations, our school's Commercial Kitchen and School Meals Program launched on April 28th, 2012.