OUR PRINCIPALS
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OUR PRINCIPALS

Over its long and distinguished history, Kingston Technical High School has been headed by Principals who have shared the vision for a school of excellence in keeping with our Motto. “Training and Character” The school had had 16 appointments or acting appointments to the post of Principal, of which one person has served twice. There have also been periods – some quite long when various persons have acted as Principal. The accomplishments and contributions of these illustrious men and women are well known, and the following briefly describes each of them.

MR. JOHN G. PEET (1896 – 1925)

Mr. Peet, an Englishman was the first Principal of the newly established training institution. The school occupied the building which had been vacated by the Mico College. During his tenure the school went through several name changes: The Board School; The Manual Training School; Government Technical and Continuation School. Slow but pioneering developments took place during his tenure as the school began to find its feet in the educational system.

MR. WILLIAM RONALD GOLDSWORTHY (1925 – 1930 AND 1943 – 1947)

Mr. Goldsworthy, another Englishman joined the staff in 1911 as an instructor. He was appointed head of the technical department in 1917. He acted as headmaster in 1925 and was appointed in 1926. He was subsequently promoted at Superintendent of Technical Studies in the Department of Education. During his period at the Department of Education, Dr. John Harris served as the Principal. During his period of service the name of the school changed again to Government Continuation, Technical and Continuation School.

DR. JOHN HARRIS (1930 – 1943)

Another expatriate, Dr. Harris presided over many important changes in the functioning of the school. There was more emphasis on Evening Vocational Training and the introduction of the City and Guilds of London and the Royal Society of Arts examinations. There was also another name change of the school to the Kingston Technical School. Dr. Harris implemented many of the recommendations of the Davis committee both in terms of curriculum development as well as expansion of the physical plant.

MR. REGINALD S. ANDERTON (1947 – 1949)

Mr. Anderton was also an Englishman, but came to the school from an appointment in Africa. During his short stay, he initiated the publication of a school magazine and initiated a number of other important changes.

MR. PATRICK ALSTON (1949 – 1955 ACTING)

Mr. Alston acted for six years during the period between the departure of Mr. Anderton and the appointment of Mr. Thomson. It is said that he was not appointed because he did not have a degree.

MR. ALISTAIR G. THOMSON (1955 – 1957)

Mr. Thomson a Scotsman, broke the tradition of English heads of the school. He was a pioneer in many ways. He was not only the Principal of the Kingston Technical School but also an advisor on Technical education to the Ministry of Education. As such his advice led eventually to the establishment of the five additional technical high schools in the early 60s. Between 1957 and 1958 he was busily engaged in the laying of foundations for establishing the Kingston Technical College which became CAST in 1958.

MR. LEIGH A. M. LLOYD (1957 – 1961)

Mr. Lloyd has the distinction of being the first Jamaican to be appointed Principal of the school, having previously served as Head of the Commerce Department. Born in Mandeville, he was educated at Mico College where he was champion athlete in 1921. Before coming to Kingston Technical he was Assistant Master and Headmaster at Government Schools. During his tenure the school’s name changed to the present one Kingston Technical High School. It therefore joined the ranks of the ‘High School’ system.

MR. DOUGLAS A. CROWTHER (1961 – 1964)

Mr. Crowther, another Englishman was previously a lecturer at the Northern Polytechnic in London as well as the Wimbledon Technical College. He came to Jamaica from Birmingham where he had headed the Electrical Engineering Department at Garrett’s Green Technical College. The school with its new status continued to grow and to play its part in the High School system, winning the Walker Cup in football in 1963.

MR. HUGH H. ATKINS (1964 – 1965 ACTING)

Mr. ‘Cappo’ Atkins has been one of the more memorable personalities in the school’s history. A great raconteur and support to all the principals he worked with, it is appropriate that he be recognized as one who gave unstinting service to the development of the school. Mr. Atkins was a great theatrical personality on KTHS’s campus, always speaking in a scholarly stentorian tone. An avid athlete and sportsman, Mr. Atkins represented the University and the City of Exeter at cricket during his college years. He was also well known in fraternal circles.

MR. EDMUND G. ROPER (1965 – 1978)

Mr. Roper was born in Panama of Jamaican parents. Educated at Mico Training College, London University (B. Sc) and Cornell University (M. Sc) He served as tutor at Mico and at the Jamaica School of Agriculture as Senior Master and Registrar. He was also the founding Principal of St. Elizabeth Technical High School from 1961-64. He was a member of the Jamaica Combined Cadet Force, Chairman of the Apprenticeship Board and a member of the Island Advisory Council of the 4-H Clubs. On his retirement he became the Registrar of the Overseas Examinations Council.

MR. JASPER WRAY (1978 – 1983)

Mr. Wray was the first past student to be appointed Principal. He was also the first student to be awarded a scholarship to the Government Technical and Continuation School as it was called then. He pursued a course in Building and Engineering Technology with first calls results. He joined the teaching staff at the age of 17 and rose to be the head of the Technical Department. He later gained a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Indiana State University. Before assuming the position of Principal of Kingston Technical High School, he served as Principal of St. Elizabeth Technical High School and later head of the Technical Education Department at CAST.

MS. DAPHNE COMRIE (1983 – 1997)

Ms. Comrie, a past student of KTHS has the distinction of being the first female Principal. She is a graduate of the Shortwood Teachers College and the University of the West Indies, Mona. She joined the staff of the Kingston Technical in 1962. She moved from head of the Department of Languages to Vice Principal in 1979. After acting as Principal for a year, she was appointed to the post in 1984. During her tenure there was great improvements in the learning environment. The Biology and Physics labs were refurbished through the instrumentality of the Rotary Club of Kingston. Under the USAID/GOJ Basic Skills Development project, a computer lab was installed, the library expanded and the resources for teaching auto mechanics and engineering workshop technology vastly improved. Ms. Comrie also served as Chairman of the Apprenticeship Board.

MR. SYDNEY TURNER (1997 – 2000 ACTING)

Mr. Turner held the substantive post of Vice Principal with special responsibility for Technical and Vocational Courses. He acted as Principal for three years before retiring. A graduate of Kingston Technical, he joined the teaching staff in 1967 after service with the National Water Commission. He also attended CAST where he gained the Diploma in Mechanical Engineering (Dip. Mech. E) and Higher National Certificate (HNC) He was awarded the Diploma in Education from UWI, Mona, in collaboration with Huddersfield Polytechnic. Mr. Turner was for some years an Assistant Examiner for Technical Drawing in the Caribbean Examinations Council.

MS. GEORGETTE PALMER (2000 – 2012)

Ms. Palmer who was one of two Vice Principals, acted as Principal from 2000 until her appointment in 2002. Another graduate of Kingston Technical and Shortwood Teachers College, she joined the teaching staff in 1979. She undertook further studies at Southern University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana where she earned the B. Sc. degree in Vocational Home Economics Education.

MR. ERNEST DONALDSON (2013 – TO PRESENT)

Mr. Donaldson, the current Principal joined the faculty after the retirement of Ms. Palmer and after the brief tenure as Acting Principal by Vice Principal Mr. Victor Jackson. Prior to joining the school, Mr. Donaldson was a member of staff at José Martí Technical High School who also served as Vice Principal. He is a graduate of CAST, VTDI, and Mico University College where he earned a Master of Arts Degree in Teaching. In addition to his stellar experience as professional educator, he has also served as an External Moderator for the Caribbean Examining Council (CXC)