Saturday, June 27, 2020 ((rezonodwes.com)) – Those of my generation will agree with me that school has not taught us reasoning, critical thinking and logic and that our teachers were narcissists who only exposed their petty interests and excessive admiration for themselves and their knowledge.
We have all found that the school of those times destroyed and humiliated a multitude of young people who were never their priority and who ended up being victims of their carelessness. In fact, our teachers were masters and lords and their lectures, a gospel word that should never be questioned, because in no case could we be more intelligent than those who teach us.
It is inconceivable that students are given a failing grade because they could not find the area and perimeter of a polygon, or because they are humiliated because they are unable to divide a number into multiple digits. It is also unthinkable that the liberal sciences do not have the same weights and measures of evaluation as the exact sciences knowing full well that the former can instill in students the skills necessary to better solve mathematical, physical and chemical problems.  The scoring methods, the corporal punishments and those consisting in isolating at the bottom of the class the children with the unsatisfactory averages serve to establish the genesis of the discrimination between the pupils who were cataloged very early in superior and inferior from the first controls . This distribution, often subjective, never took into account the adaptive capacity of a child, of a pathology not yet discovered such as myopia, hearing loss, stuttering or family difficulties. Our education does not care about disasters like divorced parents, battered mothers, cuckold fathers or one of the main scourges, the hunger caused by endemic misery. Worse still, these innocent people, very early accused of morons, were immediately marginalized by the teachers who took it easy with the little geniuses gathered in front of their desks thanks to their first top note; when elementary logic should have made them understand that it is those who languish behind who need their help.
To top it off, each course is an opportunity for teachers to display their knowledge masterfully to subject the most gifted students to challenges while neglecting those who have difficulty meeting these challenges. In short, learning in Haiti does not evaluate, but rewards the best while humiliating the less gifted, because it ignores the environmental or mental problems that could well impact the understanding of a typical student.
Nevertheless, for about a decade, I have detected a suspicion of changes in learning methods in Haitian education, except that application techniques are not effectively communicated to question the way the Ministry of Education national thinks of academic achievements and teacher-student relationships. Despite these changes, the teachers continue to give lectures, although the technical sheets available require that they no longer be teachers, but guides, guides or instructors. The bulk of the work rests on the shoulders of the students, who upon receipt of the technical sheets, must get down to doing research, with or without little assistance from their teachers, to better understand the lessons in order to prepare for them. exams under the supervision of their parents if they are themselves literate themselves.
Again, despite my fondness for this new system, I admit that the exams still contain discriminatory hints, especially in construction of text and equal opportunity for preparation. They are also the sources of failure for many students who cannot adapt to a system involving excessive memory or repeating by heart which is only a factor of intelligence, but which cannot be the only asset to excel in a system of challenges and academic pressures. Students should be placed in an environment with tools to develop their reasoning or argumentative skills.
I propose a new learning system which will no longer be based on calculation profiles, but on the mastery of academic concepts according to the rhythm of the students and not according to segregationist standards established beforehand by education leaders. We must start by confronting the professor with the fact that the time for lectures without a learning method is over, but that we are in the era of assistance and tutoring to put students in the driver's seat and allow them to develop their own learning style and their own pedagogical weighting.
This new system, instead of giving positive and negative marks, will prioritize the education which will be done downstream in an interactive way, that is to say that students will be able to navigate to new concepts after they have demonstrated mastery of it through the identification, preparation or submission of scientific hypotheses. “You got 3 out of 10 because you are a no one, an idiot, a fool “will be replaced by” Explain to me what you did not understand so that I can help you move towards the new skills. ” Pupils in difficulty will take this opportunity to explain to teachers their personal difficulties, their process of understanding and problem solving. Certainly students will be assessed after each assignment; I clearly suggest that their evaluation be based on criteria of standards and not marks.
Instead of notes, the system will apply a color coded scale where each color will determine whether the student's performance meets, does not meet, comes close to or exceeds standards. Teachers too will be assessed and required to submit explanations for the continuing failure rate of all their classes; results from which some teachers even dare to take pride. I note for you that the grading system will not be a tool that will determine the success or failure of students, but identify students in difficulty so that they receive the assistance they need to move forward. It will also imply that students will not be penalized or receive a bad grade for having given bad homework or for not having entered a subject very early, because progress will be cumulative. If, despite the teachers' continued help, the students do not manage to master the skills relating to their level, I suggest that mentors, specialized doctors and psychologists be assigned to educational establishments with the mission of assessing the conditions that handicap effective learning for these struggling students and ultimately recommend solutions for their cumulative progress.
The sums allocated to aperitifs, strong coffee and other stimulants in the national budget should be enough to save our young brains. “Which country are you talking about” will exclaim the most pessimistic “I am talking about Haiti. Let us wake up, if there will still be a country in the coming years, we will have to break away from archaic methods and reinvent ourselves as we do with technology on a simple phone with which we interact and even seek to understand its slightest difficulties.
Since we are succeeding with a technological tool that has no soul, we can best with small gifted beings and fragile and sensitive fibers. We can show them that we are endowed with reason and compassion for the emergence of a more effective education and not of knowledge to be transmitted vertically. No pupil should be abandoned or simply driven out, because the defeat of a pupil is also the failure of his school establishment without forgetting the money spent by his parents.
Dr. Bobb RJJF Rousseau
Public Law and Policy
Local Government Management
Dr. Bobb RJJF Rousseau