Categorized | Editorials

Nixing the Blame Game

There is no calumny so sorry and so very wrong as those so-called ‘explanations’ that would have this society’s victims blame themselves or cruel fate for the ills and wrongs they experience day in and day out.

Indeed, there are times in life when people who benefit directly from other people’s addictions; who make big money from other people’s sorrows and who – on occasion – pontificate mightily about what the poor and other sufferers could and should do for themselves.

One extreme variant of this type of behavior has to do with how this or that crooked merchant routinely smuggles goods, sells them – and who complain concerning the amount of stuff his dishonest employees routinely pilfer from him!

And there are all those stories – albeit anecdotal – about the land-lord who refuses to repair dwellings she has on rent while – in the same breath meantime – she bitterly complains about how nasty some of the tenants keep their apartments.

Then, there are politicians, public sector workers, teachers, administrators and other support staff who – even as they take home decent wages and salaries – preside over systems that are failing.

These people sometimes blame everyone but themselves when things collapse or when they are revealed to be both broken and failing.

Systems can and do fail.

In addition, there are times in life when the less said about a damning issue just so happens to be the course of action that should be taken by anyone who would wish to be wiser.

That this nation’s school systems are broken; are failing – and are in need of serious overhaul is as clear as clear glass on a sunny-blue day.

This nation’s schools are failing; students are hitting the street innumerate and illiterate – and of course, very many of these types are finding it hard to hold down a half-way sensible job.

We suspect that this reality is not loss on the likes of the Hon. Jerome Fitzgerald current Minister of Education, Science and Technology and his immediate predecessor in office, the FNM’s Desmond Bannister.

New information coming in features a Desmond Bannister who makes some remarks concerning this year’s bad results.

As news copy avers: “…Responding to this year’s bleak results and statistics from the BJC and BGCSE examinations, Senator Desmond Bannister called on parents to recognize the importance of education in their children’s lives and to encourage academic focus…”

He goes on to lambaste some of this nation’s parents as he indicated that, some of them “are failing our children.”

Indeed close examination of the issue at hand should start with finding out some of the more gory details hiding behind the so-called family veil.

Snatch away the secrecy and we are quite certain you will find families that are led by women who can scarcely care for themselves; and for whom, “being ‘heavy’ with a baby or ‘dropping’ an infant is pure biology.

The fact of the matter concerning capacity to nurture and thereafter help with the homework is just so much bourgeois cant.

We ask Mr. Desmond Bannister, who do you blame when the educational systems fail?

We say you put the blame on schools, the people they hire and [of course] their will and capacity to make that difference that matters for children in need of both care and education.

Contrariwise, Bannister would have the public believe that students’ parents share the blame.

As Bannister explains: “…Many of our parents are failing our children and as we’re looking forward to a new school year, something has to be done to get Bahamian parents to understand the value and importance of their children and their children’s education. When that happens you’re going to see a tremendous turnaround because instead of a focus on (brand name clothing), you’re going to see a focus on quality academic preparation and performance.” The Minister is only partially right.

In the ultimate analysis, education is a partnership between a number of parties – the government, parents in the home, Teachers in the school and the child who must be focused to learn.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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