Rise in defence of our youth

Minister of Education Nyan Gadsby-Dolly - JEFF K MAYERS
Minister of Education Nyan Gadsby-Dolly - JEFF K MAYERS

THE EDITOR: Once again I am constrained to raise my voice in concern, not in criticism of strategies used by the Ministry of Education, but over how it treats matters of discipline in our schools.

Experience has taught me two negative things:

1. As a rule, organisations like the Ministry of Education tend to be authoritarian and therefore draconian in times of crises.

2. Most authoritarian organisations today continue to use strategies of bygone years to solve contemporary problems.

Now, given today’s societies, aided by the internet, almost everybody – rich or poor; educated or uneducated – tends to have some idea of what is happening in today’s world and how to exploit the mistakes or myopia of personnel appointed to help us.

Since the reopening of schools, a strange phenomenon has emerged among our girls. Every public schoolgirl now is a magnificent warrior. Gone is the grace and purity of the average young female. She is now daring, violent, bold, and obscene in her language.

The ministry and schools, instead of nipping this problem in the bud, have stood by and remained silent. When they act, they resort to harsh strategies which only make matters worse in the long run rather than help to build a safe, ethical, productive, empathetic and humane society.

Against the above, therefore, I now propose the following:

We live in an era when all hands tend to be more helpful if they are bound by a spirit of engagement and team membership.

Research has also revealed that being fully engaged at work gives us a sense of purpose, of meaning, of belonging – all combined to meet vital human needs beyond the pay check. Therefore, if the Ministry of Education has to address rising school violence, taking all that I have so far said into consideration, it will have to discard:

1. Former approaches to policy formulation and implementation.

2. Invite all stakeholders – parents, schools, youth groups, religious bodies, community leaders, the private sector, and trade unions – to commit themselves to an ongoing developmental and rehabilitating mindset to develop our young and adult stakeholders in the education system.

Clearly then, ongoing research, communication, co-operation and collaboration will have to be the order of the day. Quick-fix strategies can no longer work.

Hence my call to all stakeholders to rise in defence of the future protectors of our society and economy. Let us give them the values, integrity, vision and mission to participate in a hegemonic TT.




"Rise in defence of our youth"

More in this section