KAMPALA – I have been rubshouldering with parents , teachers and students for the last 23 years in Uganda as a classroom teacher, Deputy Headmaster , Headmaster , Education motivational speaker, on Radio talkshows on Education programs and on several occasions, as keynote speaker in PTAs, SMCs , Teachers’ workshops, in churches and mosques imploring people about value of education ,solid parenting , inspiring learners, guiding teachers about improved teaching techniques and guiding Education stakeholders on how best to improve Education in their communities inter alia.
Suffice to say, when PLE results are out , parents come to crossroads where to take their children for Secondary Education. Others get attracted to school magnificent buildings, school bursaries and ” good academic grades” in newspapers . To others, they go by advice of friends. It’s unfortunate that some parents rarely consider the vulnerability of their children and fail to carry out due research about these schools. What happens inside the school and emperically what is provided to learners.
It’s prudent upon parents to ascertain whether that school gives holistic Education or not. That is Education that touches the mind, body and soul of a learner. I know of some schools having good buildings and even do well academically but don’t have spiritual director inform of a church minister / Imam, does not have playground to encourage sports, does not care about body hygiene of learners. Education should bring up balanced learners i.e Smart and clean, intelligent and God fearing children. It’s no wonder there is high moral decadence in Uganda. You go in an office of a highly learned folk but has smelly stockings , his hair is unkempt and we have witnessed civil servants stealing drugs , Medical personnel first asking deposit money to a dying patient in this Covid 19 world and even hospitals hoarding dead bodies because of high medical bills, contractors doing shoddy work and generally unpatriotic Citizenry. Why? because our Education graduates get half baked Education. Some schools look at monetary benefits not attending to holistic needs of learner. What we see in Uganda is culmination of poor Education standards in our schools. Emphatically, students in Secondary level are undergoing adolescence period – transition and thus sports must define their Student life. They have alot of energy that must be subjected to physical activity to burn body carolies though sports. And because of adolescence, students suffer from alot of psycho- social and emotional instabilities and bodily feelings that can be mitigated by involving themselves in sports. A school that does not have sports in it’s time table is a time bomb for students’ indiscipline and academic distractions which resultantly affects their learning process and academic performance.
Parents with a girl Child must be more careful. Some schools don’t dare to protect a girl Child. It means if a school is not strict on a girl child, her vulnerability level is high. In case of mixed school, there must be special protection of girl students with a separate dormitory with resident matron and Teachers must be dedicated to make roll calls at anytime. Therefore, without such strict inner school mechanisms, a girl Child will be inducted to all vices like fornication , drug and alcohol abuse, pornography , betting and lesbianism. To me, a parent is to blame; you made wrong choice of school and your young child could not determine a school to go to. We have multiplicity of solid schools to make choice from.
Let parents identify schools that give individual attention to slow learners, give counseling to students , career guidance, that bring in Education motivational Speakers that inspire and unlock a learners’ potentiality to fullness , that make learners to think and dream big and equip learners with tips on how to improve personal grades and how to attack life failure. People like Ben Carson – the best Nuero-Surgeon in the world , Jack Ma – Chinese billionaire, Winston Churchill – Prime Minister emeritus of Britain we’re not good academically but their teachers gave them special attention and inspired them and are world figures to reckon . Take your children in schools that have mentored their Teachers to perform above teaching subject content. In this Covid 19 world, learners need more Teachers’ attention than before. Alot has distracted them academically in these Covid 19 Lockdowns . The role of teacher is bigger than teaching subject content per se.
Inferably and repeatedly, dear parents and guardians; the choice of the school to take your children to is sine qua non to fulfill their life dreams or shatter them. I well know of schools with good buildings and with good “academic scores” but at the end of secondary education, students are certified drunkards, womanizers , gamblers and are mostly HIV positive. By a miracle; they get good grades when they go to university, they eat tuition, fail to complete university or sex / drug / alcohol abuse defines their lives. And others who complete university end up getting poor class degrees and go further to lack good work values/ virtues in their employment world. In this, a parent is to blame; you made a wrong choice of a school to give holistic Education to your child at an early age which impacts his adult life. We must equally know some schools have commercialised Education and they look more at profits than looking at the future of a learner. Parents watch out.
” IAM NOT TEACHER BUT AWAKENER” – Robert Frost.
Igambirine III Hillary is a Lead Education motivational speaker@Great Lakes Education motivational Speakers.