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Education minister needs courage

Published: Aug 22, 2013

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Dear Editor,

Listening to the talk shows you get the impression that the minister of education is retreating into a protective mode. He has the nerve to tell professional people that how they see things does not matter even though they are drawing their conclusions from the same information he uses to decide that mentioning the overall grade average is not a good thing to do. I cannot say that I blame him, but he should have the courage to admit that the band-aids are not working.

At least he is using the spin associated with his profession very effectively. Is the minister implying that his view is the only one that is credible? Is he saying that he and his associates have the final word on what to many is a vexing problem? The system has failed and is continuing on that road because the politicians and those who support them seem oblivious to the fact that there are children in this nation who need to learn the basics of reading, writing, comprehension, addition, division and subtraction. Forget the spin. Forget the union and its seasonal demands and get on with the job at hand.

If he really wants to be brave he can start a program that stresses the importance of parental accountability and the need for those who are politically connected to stop acting as intermediaries for those in their constituency who do not collect report cards but make it a habit of going to schools to make noise or threaten the lives of anyone who they think is a problem for their child.

It is not difficult to see why some educators have lost hope. The minister has to put his brain in gear before he opened his mouth to rationalize that which cannot be rationalized; except to show that there is much work to be done if we are to see a change.

– Edward Hutcheson

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