Haile High

…that the small voices may be heard

Kali gazed at the portrait of Haile Selassie glowing softly in the red lights of the editing suite. He was in a room in Jamaica recovering his health after a close-shave by the “reaper”… now what? A gentle breeze spirited the curtains as the night air sighed through the room. “Knowledge is a treasure that must be grasped.” Selassie’s words on education came back to Kali. There sat his computer. It was hooked to the Internet. Why not start a school and let some of the small voices be heard?

Thus was born the Haile Selassie Iniversity of Higher Reason. Haile High as it is known in Jamaica was developed as a school to teach computer skills to the handicapped and economically disadvantaged children in Jamaica. It began in 2000 with a single student who was interested in learning, and willing to pay for her knowledge by pumping tap water through the school’s filtration system. From this humble beginning Haile High is now in its fifth year with an average attendance of 12 students at each session. Free of tuition.

Seeing the need expressed by our first student, Haile High’s founder, Alessandro Macone (Kali) envisioned a system where each student would become a teacher. Thus perpetuating the acquisition of skills to help their peers in their current educational pursuits…insuring that one day each will find higher education or successful employment.

The first difficulty was getting the children interested enough in computers to get them to attend classes regularly. In a country where computers are totally unavailable to the poor and their children, the filling of this educational void was a very new idea. To generate interest, Haile High offered swimming lessons at Doctor’s Cave Beach Club before class. Learning to swim was great fun. It was heartening to watch the students gaining confidence in themselves as they played together in the water. Swimming has become a valuable and favorite part of the curriculum.

After swimming the students take a van up to the school at The Cottontree. Before settling down to work at the computer though, empty tummies need to be filled. Hunger is a great distraction. Kali says, “the only thing you can teach an empty belly is how to growl.

As the school grew, the difficulty of children taking time off from chores at home to attend the school on a Saturdays became another challenge. Again Haile High rose to the occasion by offering the incentive of transportation reimbursement for those students who are teaching other students. The goal of each student being a teacher was finally realized.

The success of the whole program can be seen in the faces of its students - swimming, eating, and studying. Haile High provides more than computer training…these children are now surfing the Internet and the world it opens…a place of infinite ideas and opportunities.

Haile High Today and in the Future

Since its inception, over 35 students ages 7 – 52 have attended classes at Haile High. The school is housed in a multi-level three room suite at The Cottontree on Queen’s Drive in Montego Bay, Jamaica . The computer lab currently has space for 10 computer stations networked together to facilitate instruction and improve operating skills.      Our computer equipment is purchased in the US at yard sales and surplus computer stores as well as donations from friends. We found shipping too time consuming and costly so each piece of equipment is hand carried to Jamaica.

The computers are PC’s with Windows ’98 or newer; all have word processing systems. All our computers have CD drive so we can install a Mavis Beacon typing program as well as study guides for all elementary and high school classes. These educational programs are available on a variety of subjects was well as encyclopedias and maps. Currently one computer is connected to the Internet but all students have access to it through the network, and regularly email Queen Sam in the US for help they can’t find elsewhere. In addition, students can do research for their regular school homework under the guidance of their teachers.

The need for help in English became apparent as students attempted to write letters and frame inquiries on the World Wide Web. In response, Haile High is introducing an English Composition course this year. To see the results of this program check out the Comments section of the

Haile High Makes a Difference

There are few thrills greater than seeing a child learn, whether it be to swim or how to read. At Haile High we are blessed of these visions and to live these wondrous times. Each challenge results in lessons learned, and lives changed. It is indeed an honor to be a part of opening a new world to young minds.

Kali Queen Sam's letter to Haile High

Hi everyone,

This is a follow up to the information I gave you at our last class. Send me your thoughts in an attachment!

The Seneca Indians have a very good way to approach life and its problems. They all asked themselves 4 Questions whenever things werenít going well. They are:

Iíd like you each to think about these questions in relation to your time at Haile High.

  • Are you happy attending Haile High?
  • What are you doing to add to the confusion during classes?
  • What can you do to bring about peace and contentment during classes?
  • How will you be remembered when classes are over?

This is just an exercise to get you thinking about the questions and putting your own thoughts in order. Write your responses in patwah then translate them into English using the Elements of Style books. Next type them up in Word. Finally send them to me in an attachment. DO NOT LEAVE IT ALL TO CLEO! Each one should attach her own letter to the email.

Have a wonderful day! Weíre thinking about all of you and trust the day will be a success.

Look for your letters on at your next class. I wonít put anything embarrassing on the web, I promise!

One love to all our students, Queen Sam


Hi Queen Sam!

I am sorry to hear you guys have to be in the cold up there. It is very rainy down here so we mostly keep inside. I guess this is our snow! We are at class today, not as many as I would like to have but we are here nonetheless! I really enjoyed classes today. It was fun and I was actually listened to by everyone! I am now going to allow everyone to make their attachments.

One love,

PS: I hope you get this because I had a hard time sending it. The virus Kim discovered on the computer is really, really bad and the other Internet-enabled computer seems to be getting it too. The girls and I await your response.

Dear Queen Sam,

I miss you a lot! I am in the middle of my exams and I am happy to hear from you! My evaluation of your questions are these:

I am happy with my life right now but I hope that as I grow I will do better and be a better person. I LOVE being here at Haile High and it has been a real blessing! I donít think I add to confusion at class, only troubling Cleo when she is busy! I want to be remembered as a kind person when Iím gone.

One love,


Dear Queen Sam

Hi, this is Anieka! I really miss you guys a lot! I wish I could see you. I am doing exams at school now and so far they are going OK. These are my replies that I have to attach to send to you.

I am happy with the way I am and I love me, although sometimes I feel down. But I know that God and my family love me soÖI am happy still.

I am very happy coming to Haile High school. I love it here; especially Cleo. She makes classes fun and makes me want to learn. She helps me with my homework and takes time out to explain things I donít understand.

I do not make confusion in class only my sister, Venika, does that.

When Iím gone I want to be remembered as a beautiful, loving person.

After classes I want to be remembered as a smart person.

Hugs and kisses, Aneika.

PS: Thanks for your condolences about my Granny.

Dear Queen Sam,

I hope you are doing fine. I have my answers to your questions. Cleo helped me do it. I feel happy doing what Iím doing right now. I go to church and dance in a club at church. I enjoy all the things I do especially coming to class at Haile High. I am mostly the one to add to the confusion in class, but I want to try to be less troublesome. I want to be remembered as a hero when I am gone!

Love, Venika


Kali Alessandro Macone - Founder

Our Reason For Being

The Higher Being is Love
The Love of Self
The Love for Others
The love of our Country
The Love of our Being

… and that’s what Haile High teaches… as well as Computer Skills, Music, Signing, Swimming and Spanish. When we began, our goal of being was to assemble a cadre of young students who would become teachers… teachers of the handicapped.

In Jamaica, when a child is born disabled, she has little chance of survival beyond begging. The family focus is on the ablest; the others fall in behind. The last to be served is the child who has a defect of mind or body.

In a broader view, anyone who is denied access to the power of computing is seriously handicapped. Those of wealth not only have a glide to better education, they have access to computers, and to the world that computing opens for research and higher skills. The masses will never know this path… but for a system that spreads its knowledge to the masses without bureaucracy or expense.

This system has been proven in a pilot program begun in the year 2000 at Haile High. With minimal funds we have shown that poor kids can augment their normal schooling by attending our free classes on Saturdays. Their marks soar with the inclusion of computer technology. Their minds are open to a new path. A path leading from the ghetto to the Light. A path along which future leaders are guided. A path to a better Nation.

The Path begins at the shore where old fears are washed away with the tide… and where camaraderie binds the flock as one.

Queen Sam Synchronized Swimming

Queen Sam teaches synchronized swimming to hone the student’s skills so they become more comfortable in the water.

A van whisks the anointed up the hill to the Cottontree where sustenance fuels mind and body.

Monique & Kimone

Monique and Kimone prepare lunch.

Then classes begin, usually with a lecture in English which is simultaneously taught with Patois and Signing...
Todd McFarlin explains the network system he installed to link all the computers at Haile High. Todd McFarlin - Teaching
Because the school is small, students rotate in clusters, that move every twenty minutes to new areas and to different subjects.

Cleo uses keyboards
Cleo uses donated keyboards to drill students in key functions.
This is not a three-ring circus. It is a microcosm of the possible; showing how much young, uncluttered minds are able to grasp when in an arena without frontiers.
Monique practices her school presentation on vitamin deficiency diseases after researching the information on the computers at Haile High.
Monique's Presentation
Opal Looks On Opal Kentish is the school’s Administrator. She is shown here watching Kerene teaching a new student the fun of computing. Opal has had over thirty years of experience with the handicapped.

At three refreshments are served prior to the last segments of the program. Students send their email letters to pen pals from around the world. Then we gather in the courtyard to dance and sing.. And just have unfettered fun.


Because of the generosity of the Hew Family our rent is low. It costs only $12 US per student per Saturday to run Haile High’s programs… including swimming, food and transportation.

Drumming is a favorite end of the day activity.

Waving Goodbye

Blessed is the end of the day when our girls amble down the hill to hail cabs… their heads bobbing in happy conversation.

Our task is fulfilled. New tools, new thoughts, new vistas are in those heads… beautiful minds that will teach others, and help build a strong new nation in the sun.

Give thanks and praises

AKA Alessandro Macone

The Cottontree

The Cottontree  

The Haile Lion

Haile High

Opal Kentish, Administrator – 876-953-1557
Contact Lynn Abbott at 978-263-4805
if you would like to help


      My name is Veneika Smith. I am eight years of age. I live at Flankers in Jamaica. I attend the Flankers Primary and Junior High and I am in grade 2. I also attend the Haile High school where I learn how to run a computer. It’s fun and I like going there. I love going to the beach and I like playing while at the beach. It bothers me when students copy from my book. I came second in my class.

      My name is Christina. I live at Long Bay, Jamaica. I am ten years of age. I attend the Success Primary school in Barrett Town. I am in grade 5. My favourite subject is science and I love to play football. My favourite food is ackee and saltfish which is our national dish. In the future I would like to be a computer analyst. I attend the Haile High school where I learn about computers. I enjoy being there because I learn a lot.


      My name is Aneika Smith. I am twelve years old and I am in grade six. I attend Flankers primary and Junior high school. I have attended Computer classes at Haile High for the past three years and I enjoy being here as I learn a lot. My ambition is to become a Business woman.

      My name is Deidre Stewart. I am twelve years old. I attend the Team Work Preparatory school where I am in grade six. I live in St. James, Jamaica. At school I play Football (soccer) and I like music class the best. In the future I would love to Become a doctor. I started coming to Kali when I was a baby but I started at the age of ten. At Kali's school, you learn about computers and other things.


      My name is Shanieka Rhoden and I am 15 years old. I enjoy listening to dancehall, reggae and hip hop music. I like to watch horror, action and mystery movies. I like to read exciting story books such as: Harry Potter, The Hardy Boys and Sweet Valley High. In the future I want to become a lawyer or an accountant.

      My name is Kenrick Sawyers. I am 18 years old and I attend the Muschett High School whereI am in grade 11. My favourite subject is math, I.T, and language. In the future I would like to become a football genius. I am currenlty playing for Seba United and I would like to play for the Jamaica national team. I attend Haile High because I learn a lot about the Computer, a lot more.

You can get in touch with me at

Kenrick Sawyers
Monique Brown

      My name is Monique Brown but my friends call me "Unique" Monique. I am a 14 year old student of the William Knibb Memorial High School (in Jamaica), where I am presently in the third form. I also attend the Haile High school where I learn how to operate a computer, I enjoy going there because I get to learn new things everyday. In the future I would love to pursue a career in the field of medicine. I enjoy singing, dancing, listening to music and interacting with people.

      Hi every one I hope you enjoy reading my page. My name is Kimone Pryce, you can call me Kim if you wish. I am 16 years old and love to look beautiful and attractive. I attend the Haile Selassie Iniversty of Higher Reason. My position at Haile High is superintendent –e.g. to make lunch and to keep the place in order for class. I have 2 sister and 1 brother. My brother's name is Tajay. He is 2 years old and gives me a lot of trouble. My sister's name is Apple. She is 11 years old and loves to eat a lot of food. My bigger sister Irene is 22 years old and she is mute and deaf. That is why my sister Apple and I can speak sign language. We are happy also to teach this at Haile High. Thank you for taking the time to read my web page.

Kimone Pryce
Crystal Reid

      My name is Crystal Reid but my friends call me Cleo. I am a 15 year old Gemini who enjoys swimming, reading, socializing and laughing. In fact I am probably mostly known for my loud and long laughing. I live in Montego Bay Jamaica and I attend Mount Alverina High School (a catholic, all girls school) where I am currently in the 4th form and take Science and Business classes. On Saturdays I attend a computer class where I learn more and more about computers, how to use and manipulate them and how to use them to make my life easier. In the future, I truthfully have no idea what I want to do but I hear it’s never too late to decide.

      My name is Opal and I am a Jamaican born woman. My hobbies are swimming, reading and listening to music. I like reggae best and my favorite artist is Bob Marley, of course. I am the Administrator at Haile High. I take care of business – doing the books and paying the bills. In the future I hope to become an expert in the field of Computing.

Opal Kentish
Roxanne Gardiner
      I can do all things through christ who strenghtens me. Hi my name is ROXANNE GARDINER. I attend the ST JAMES HIGH SCHOOL which is in St James, Jamaica. I am in the 2nd form and I am 13 yrs old. My hobbies are reading, singing, dancing and listening to music. In the future I would like to become a nurse. My philosophy is always be a leader and not a follower. The reason why I came to this class [Haile Selassie Inversity] is to further my knowledge of computer studies. I hope you enjoy reading and visiting this Web page.

My Summer Holiday by Monique J. Brown

      Monique wrote this note on a computer at Haile High before Ivan struck. She then sent it as an e-mail attachment to Kaliflowa in the U.S. Chances are that Monique, like most of the Kids in Jamaica, would have never, ever had the chance to learn and operate a computer if our school wasn't there.

"Unique" Monique

      My holiday started on June 30, 2004. It was not as enchanting as expected but could have been better. I went to the beach several times with friends and family ~ it was a splash!

      The 9th of July was my 14th birthday. I went to the beach, ate KFC and played music. I even went to dance practice and most of all, I ate plenty of ice cream, more than anyone could eat in a week!

      On the 25th of July, I went to my Family Reunion where I got the chance to meet family members that I never met before. It was held at Bogue Hill located in St. James.

      I then returned to Flankers where at my church a Miss and a Mini Miss Visionette princess contest was held. (A visionette is a group of girls between the ages of 8-18. Our youngest member is Veneika. We learn to serve God, to dance and how to prepare for the world.) I was a contestant in this beauty contest where I was crowned Miss Visionette Princess to represent my church at a rally on the 25th of September. The funniest part of the night was the dress contest [adults-schoolers and children as the old days]. The best dress won two passes to Sandals. After all this I returned to Bogue Hill after the shocking news that a close friend to the family passed away.

Kaliflowa Declares War

On the concept of war

Terror is in the mind. Hurricanes are acts of Nature ~ and that's Jah's dominion. Jah has nothing to do with terror.

I&I business is restoration. The life of our school is on the line, therefore, I&I life is on the line ~ for the Haile Selassie I school is I&I life.

In compliance with today's avid susu 'pon "who did what during his proported military service, Dada Kali will reveal all about his life in uniform. Click on his photograph to see the first revelation of the continuing series "Kali Goes To War".


One love, Kaliflowa

Click here to find out who Kaliflowa is.

Hurricane Ivan Comes To Town

      On September 11th Haile High's potential funding blew away with the arrival of Ivan the Terrible on Jamaica's coast. A large US company with offices in Kingston was interested in supporting the school until Ivan's Force 4-5 winds battered the island for many hours. One computer school is very small in the midst of the problems Ivan has created.

Click on Ivan the Terrible to see the devastation and learn what we need to help our students and rebuild.

      Haile High lost computers and equipment. The trees that shaded our students at lunch are gone. Until now Haile High has functioned with only the income Kali and Sam can generate. Ivan has changed all that.

      We know we'll need laptop computers, educational computer programs and textbooks to replace those lost, in addition to cash donations. So far we have raised $1300 that is already helping to relieve the devastation and restart the classes.

      Your contribution is appreciated more than you can possibly know. Jamaica's economy relies on tourism. Tourists don't like hurricanes! During this crisis Jamaica will depend on help from other nations and organizations to rebuild. These take time to get in place and much of the aid goes to those who have the best access to official Jamaica. People like our students and their families will see very little of that help. While we can't offer charitable contribution tax deductions, we can guarentee that all money collected goes straight to restoration of the school and assistance to our student's families.

      To help, please send a check or money order to Lynn Abbott 153 Summer Street Acton, MA 01720 or click here to use Paypal for credit card donations. If you have equipment or can link us up with someone who can provide help, share our website with them or contact Lynn or Kali at:

      Give thanks and praises for your generosity.

A Web Visitor Comments

Dear Haile High,

I've been a teacher for over 30 years, and I believe I can recognize a student who's excited about learning. The faces I see on belong to kids who feel good about themselves and their work. Students look like this when their studies have real meaning to their lives, and when they are being taught by someone who cares about them. Looking at their photos and reading their words; I know something special is happening at that school.

I've never been to Haile High, but seeing its web site makes me want to go there and be part of it.


Vicki Citron
Newton, Massachusetts

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