Saint Helena (island)

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Saint Helena

Basic Data
Official Country Name: Saint Helena
Region: Africa
Population: 7,212
Language(s): English
Literacy Rate: 97%


The island of Saint Helena is 1,200 miles from the southwest cost of Africa in the southern Atlantic Ocean. The educational system there follows that of the United Kingdom, as the island is a British Dependent Territory. The academic year is broken up into three terms, and the primary language of instruction is English. Education is free and mandatory for children between the ages of 5 and 15. Students between the ages of five and eight attend one of the St. Helena four primary schools: Half Tree Hollow First School, Jamestown First School, Longwood First School, and St. Paul's First School. Three middle schoolsHarford Middle School, Pilling Middle School, and St. Paul's Middle Schooloffer additional primary education to students ranging from 8 to 12 years of age. The island's sole secondary school, The Prince Andrew Central School, offers secondary education to 12- to 16-year-old students.

While each school is equipped with its own education materials, including textbooks, more specialized resources are shared among the schools. Limited vocational training for teachers is available from teaching specialists within the island's communities, as well as from guest teacher trainers. Most of St. Helena's teachers are residents of the island. Formal higher education is not offered on St. Helena; however, various scholarships to colleges, universities, and vocational schools in the United Kingdom are available to qualified students under programs such as the Training and Work Experience Schemes.

Bibliography

Britannica.com. Saint Helena. 2001. Available from http://www.britannica.com.

Cheltenham & Gloucester College of Higher Education. St. Helena Education. 2001. Available from http://www.chelt.ac.uk/.


AnnaMarie L. Sheldon

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Saint Helena

B asic D ata
Official Country Name: Saint Helena
Region (Map name): Africa
Population: 7,212
Language(s): English
Literacy rate: 97%

Saint Helena, a group of islands in the South Atlantic Ocean midway between South America and Africa, was uninhabited when they were discovered by the Portuguese in 1502. Its most notorious resident was Napoleon Bonaparte, who was exiled there from 1815 until his death in 1821. Today, it is known for much tamer reasons: one of its islands is the site of a United States Air Force auxiliary airfield and serves as a breeding ground for sea turtles and sooty terns, and the area harbors at least 40 species of plants unknown anywhere else in the world. The official language is English. The population is approximately 7,000, and the literacy rate is 97 percent. The chief of state is the British monarch, and the head of government is a Governor and Commander in Chief, who is appointed by the monarch. There is a 15-seat unicameral Legislative Council. The economy depends largely on financial assistance from Britainthere are few jobs in the islandsbut fishing, handicrafts and cattle also play important roles.

The media in St. Helena enjoys freedom of press and speech. The country's only major newspaper is the English-language weekly the St. Helena Herald, which appears on Fridays in print and online. It replaced the government-sponsored weekly St. Helena News in June 2001.

There is one radio station, which is AM, for 3,000 radios. There are 2,000 televisions in the country, but no local television stations. There is one Internet service provider.

Bibliography

"Annual Survey of Freedom Related Territory Scores," Freedom House (2000). Available from http:// www.freedomhouse.org.

"St. Helena," Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). World Factbook (2001). Available from http://www.cia.gov.

"Country Profile," Worldinformation.com (2002 ). Available from http://www.worldinformation.com.

"St. Helena Herald," St. Helena News Media (2002). Availabl from http://www.news.co.sh.

Jenny B. Davis

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SAINT HELENA, commonly written St Helena. A British dependency in the South Atlantic. Sole language: English. When the Portuguese navigator João da Nova Castella discovered the island on 21 May 1502, he named it after the mother of the Roman emperor Constantine, the saint of the Eastern Church whose feast day it was. St Helena was a port of call for ships travelling to the East Indies, may have been occupied by the Dutch in the mid-17c, and was annexed and occupied by the East India Company in 1659. In 1873, nearly half the population was imported slaves. Its remoteness made it the choice for Napoleon's exile, 1815–21. By the later 1830s, the island was under direct British rule. In 1922, Ascension Island was made a dependency, and in 1966 St Helena received a measure of autonomy. Local pronunciation includes: (1) Substitution of /w/ for /v/, so that very is pronounced ‘werry’. (2) Replacement of /θ/ and /ð/ by /f/ and /d/, so that for example bath is pronounced ‘baf’, and the is ‘de’. (3) Use of /ɔɪ/ for /aɪ/, so that the island is ‘de oiland’. Special vocabulary includes: (1) Names for indigenous plants and animals, such as gum wood, hog fish, old-father-live-forever, wire bird (a small plover, the only native land bird). (2) Such usages as jug up to arrange flowers in a vase; mug a jug or pitcher for pouring; make free with yourself to take risks. See TRISTAN DA CUNHA.

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St Helena, a volcanic island in the South Atlantic, is 1,200 miles from Africa and 1,800 from South America. With a length and breadth of 10 miles by 6, it is roughly the size of Jersey. The East India Company took possession of it in 1659 as a port of call and it has been a British colony ever since. The capital is Jamestown and the population more than 5,000. The British government, much exercised after Waterloo to know what to do with their unwelcome guest the Emperor Napoleon, found it more secure than Elba, from which he had escaped without difficulty. Lord Liverpool described it as ‘particularly healthy’ and ‘the safest station that could be found’. Bonaparte spent the last six years of his life at Longwood, under the anxious supervision of the governor, Sir Hudson Lowe.

J. A. Cannon

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St Helena Rocky island in the s Atlantic, 1920km (1190mi) from the coast of w Africa; the capital is Jamestown. Discovered by the Portuguese in 1502, it was captured by the Dutch in 1633. It passed to the British East India Company in 1659, and became a British crown colony in 1834. It is chiefly known as the place of Napoleon I's exile (he died here in 1821). It is now a UK dependent territory and administrative centre for the islands of Ascension and Tristan da Cunha. It services ships and exports fish and handicrafts. Area: 122sq km (47sq mi). Pop. (2000) 10,000.

http://www.sainthelena.gov.sh

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