Carvajal: Education woes

·2 min read

I agree with the move to review the education system but disagree that the reason is Filipino students are getting the lowest scores in international comprehension tests. I also don’t think senators should be doing the review. They are part more of the problem than of the solution.

The over-arching reason for a review is the somber truth that Philippine education has produced, on one hand, leaders who lack integrity and, on the other, an uncritical-thinking and culturally dominated electorate that repeatedly votes into office their lying, thieving, and otherwise self-serving political patrons.

On the ground, what is wrong with the system? Is it the student or the teacher?

In basic education, something is terribly wrong with the students but it is not their fault. Many are just too poor to afford going to school. Those who manage to go are often under-nourished, hence slow to comprehend for having underdeveloped brains.

Of teachers, some of them are most surely underperforming but, again, it is not their fault. They should in fact be extolled for doing their best under such adverse conditions as low salaries, lack of classrooms and education paraphernalia, and corrupt education officials, to list a few.

Whose fault is all this but that of our political leaders who until now have failed to provide proper nutrition, classrooms, educational paraphernalia for underprivileged students and professional growth to their teachers.

Or is it the content or methodology that is wrong with our education system?

Two beasts, a lamb and a wolf, are said to reside in each person. Education’s goal is to get the two beasts to live in harmony and contribute, in their respective unique ways, to the attainment of a person’s goal in life.

Yet, Filipino colonial culture defines success in material terms. What is wrong with education is that it does not seem to mind if the wolf attains that success for a person while the lamb simply puts up a false front.

More than impart knowledge and skills for making money, education should exude with human values of integrity and sensitivity to the needs of others. More than material success, education’s content should deal principally with a person’s fulfillment as a decent human being.

According to William Butler Yeats, “Education is not about filling buckets. It is lighting fires.” Which is also what Albert Einstein meant when he said education is not about giving answers but asking questions. The teaching method is wrong that treats students as buckets that don’t have to think and comprehend what they’re being filled with.

In the end, what is wrong with our education is that vested-interest politics undermines its capability to produce critical thinking and self-respecting Filipinos. It’s almost like people on top don’t want us educated properly so their positions of power and the corrupt ways they get to these positions are never questioned.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting