Culture

Jamaican Hall Of Fame: Hazel Louise Vaz, O.D., Teacher and Founder of Vaz Preparatory School

Hazel Louise Vaz, was born Hazel Louise Chaplin on July 25, 1914 in Morant Bay, St. Thomas, Jamaica. She was educated at Wesley Primary School, Wolmers Girl School and Tutorial College.

After graduating from College, Ms. Chaplin began her career path which included being a Teacher at Morris Knibb Preparatory School from 1931-1951. During this time she met Everard Bancroft Vaz and married him. The union produced two daughters.

Mrs. Vaz’s idealogies and Christian background prompted her to start a school of her own named Vaz Preparatory School, which is located at 111/2 Dunoon Road in Kingston, Jamaica. She wanted to create an atmosphere of superior education with christian values and morals.

Students were held to the highest levels of academic achievment, combined with healthy doses of athletic excellence. Her philosophy on education was that, “There was no such thing as a dunce.” If you studied hard you could achieve anything.

As Principal of Vaz Prep, Mrs. Vaz was never too busy to lead the school in morning prayers and song everyday. Like most christians, she believed, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all things shall be added unto you.”

Thanks to Mrs. Vaz and her dedicated classroom of teachers, Vaz Preparatory School has been successful in producing some of the most valuable and prestigious citizens of our Jamaican society.

I am proud to say that her teachings of “Good, Better, Best, Never Let It Rest, Till Your Good Be Better and Your Better Best”, still follows me around today and motivates me to achieve my own personal excellence.

The Jamaican Hall of Fame salutes Mrs. Vaz and her bevy of teachers for the commendable task of educating future leaders.

About the author

Margaret J.Bailey