Charlemont High School

History of Charlemont High School


Charlemont High School was "conceptualized" by the late John Bernard “Jack” Stephenson, a former Member of Parliament for North St Catherine. The notion came about as a result of concerns expressed by parents in the area whose children had to attend schools outside the area, as far as Kingston and Claremont in St Ann. The land was bought from the late Custos McGrath. The funds for the building and infrastructure came from businesses and service clubs in North St Catherine including Alcan Jamaica Limited, the Lions Club, the United States and the Jamaica Citrus Growers Association. The St Catherine Garden Club landscaped the school grounds.

On September 1, 1978 , the first batch consisting of 240 students (120 boys and 120 girls ) was admitted. The staff complement was 12 teachers, 5 administrative workers, 10 ancillary workers and principal Mr.Ruel Forsythe. Mr. Gladstone Lewars, Education Officer was appointed by the Ministry of Education to oversee the appointment of the Board Members and the recruitment of staff. The first set of persons to be appointed were: Mr. James Keene - Board Chairman,  Mr. Cecil Bent - Deputy Board Chairman, Mr. Ruel Foresythe - Principal, Mrs. Gloria Grant - Bursar and Mrs. Pauline Brown - Executive Secretary.

The institution has changed over its 30 years of existence. Today we have 78 teachers and 1,437 students. In 1981 and again in 1998, major expansions occurred; thus facilitating the opportunity to provide quality education of its ever-growing intake of students. Our first batch of 42 sixth formers came on board on October 5, 1998. Member of Parliament, Hon. Robert Pickersgill was on hand to witness its commissioning.

 The school continues to boast about its output of well-rounded students who have established themselves in society. We have graduated students who have become medical doctors, philosophical doctors, media practitioners, school principals, nurses, social workers, world class athletes, footballers, and the list continues. With regards to CXC examinations at CSEC  and CAPE levels, our results have at times surpassed the national average and subject areas like Home Economics, Visual Arts, Information Technology, Business and History. Others have achieved 100% pass rate.           

There is a strong extra-curricular involvement and students have excelled in Festivals of the Performing Arts, Essay Competition and Culinary Arts, just to name a few. Noteworthy, is the fact that the school’s band is rated as one of the best in Jamaica.  We continue to strive for excellence and are committed to the task of nation building and to create an environment in which our students and staff are given the platform on which to soar. 


The Strategic Objectives of Charlemont High School are as follows:


  1. To make educational offerings available to all eligible youngsters in the community. 
  2. To strengthen existing systems of  accountability and performance management and introduce new ones, where necessary, in order to improve employees and students output to win confidence and trust of the wider community. 
  3. To hone student’s skills in literacy and numeracy development to ensure the attainment of mastery by all students and increase the  percentage of students and increase the  percentage of students passing 5 and more CSEC subjects including English and  Mathematics.  
  4. To work with all stakeholders to create a more orderly, safe, secure, caring and student-friendly environment and to ensure that 90% of students have no infraction. 
  5. To partner with all stakeholders in executing the objectives, mission and vision of the school. 
  6. To better allocate existing resources and  provide additional where necessary to meet the needs of the learners.  
  7. To implement an integrated approach to  curriculum offering thereby:   a. Improving the school’s average from 55% to 60%.   b. Improving CSEC’s performance from 84.89% to 90%.   c. Ensuring that 90% of students sitting CAPE subjects pass at least 2 subjects and a  compulsory subject receiving grades 1-4.   d. Ensuring that 60% of students are active in at least one sport and one other curricular activity, thereby enhancing their social and cultural skills building their self-esteem. 
  8. To ensure the staff at all levels are equipped with the requisite knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics necessary for the effective and efficient delivery of service. 

Charlemont High School’s vision states that: 


In 2017, Charlemont High School is well-known for discipline, accountability, respect and strong school spirit among its highly ranked motivated stakeholders; enabling it to be ranked among the top 10 schools in Jamaica in academics, sports, the arts and behavior. 

Charlemont High School’s mission statement is as follows: 

 Charlemont’s mission statement is to provide our students with the right environment. opportunities and support to become highly skilled and well-rounded citizens who contribute to the development of their community, nation and the world.

Basic Information

School Name: Charlemont High 

School Type:  Traditional High School

Established:  September 1, 1978

School School Code:  14088


P.O. Box 4282

Linstead, St.Catherine


Telephone: 985-33079 

Fax: 985-3377 

Email Address: 


Region 6 – Old Harbour 

Principal:  Mr. Garth Gayle

Chairman (Acting):  Mrs. Rita Banhan 

Educational Officer:  Mrs. Shellion Dillion-Burrell 

Total Number of teachers: 78 

Student Enrollment:  1,437 

Boys - 683, Girls - 754  

Constituency:  North Western St. Catherine  

Member Of Parliament:  Hon. Robert Pickersgill 


Jack Stephenson 


James Keene (Sept. 1978 - May 1989) 

Robert Cranston (Jan. 1990 - Feb. 1989) 

Alex Drysdale (April 1993 - July 2008) 



B. Forsythe (1978 - 1979)

D. Bernard (1979 - 1986) 

O. Whitehead (1986 - 1989)

R. Traile (1990 - 1993)

R. Williams (1996 - 2011)