Education ministry or parents – who is liable?
THE EDITOR, Madam:
Having recently been made aware of a child who is now transitioning to grade five in the primary school system, and being unable to spell his/her name as well as simple three-letter words that ought to have been known even prior to attending school, I have just one question: who is to be blamed?
It is easy for one to point fingers and play the blame game but in circumstances of this nature, who is to be held responsible? Each individual/entity has a responsibility for and to our children. But one has to ask, except for a known disability, why does the school system allow a child to continuously progress to higher grades knowing they are incapable of reading at the required level?
Are special-needs classes at every learning institution? Are they in every school zone? Is the education system failing to adequately provide the necessary resources to properly address the needs of these children? Does the pride of some parents hinder the child’s progress? Should this decision be left up to the parent or the school system? Either way, something has to be done and something has to change.
The economic development is dependent on the successes of our children and if we continue to feed illiteracy into society, how else do we expect to thrive? Crime will continue to manifest, thus hindering the economic growth. Sadly, this is vastly contributing negatively to society.
ONUS ON BOTH
As far as I’m concerned, the onus is on both parent involvement and institutional intervention. A system has to be put in place to thwart circumstances such as this. It cannot be that a 10/11-year-old reaches a particular grade and cannot manoeuvre an exercise such as reading at that particular level; yet he/she is allowed to advance to a higher level grade.
Minus the emotions of parents/guardians, the developmental needs of our children should be of utmost priority, so that they have a better chance of contributing positively to society.