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Good manners and right conduct

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I recently started teaching a class in opinion writing at Letran College, and so far, I'm happy with my class (no, this doesn't mean there's any guarantee they will pass). People I've talked to who belong to an older generation, often end up recalling they used to have a subject in school called "good manners and right conduct." I think all of us will, sooner or later, feeling the nostalgia our elders feel, for the manners of their era. A professor who blogs is The Bunker Chronicles, and he has a a rather depressing entry on how students behave:
For the third straight class day, one of my Philippine History classes went under the microscopic observation of one of the school's coordinators. It was a very sorry sight for the coordinator to see the blatant and wanton disregard and disrespect for authority displayed by the students of that class. I was saddened. Although I tried not to say it in class yesterday, but I finally broke out and confessed to them that I might lose my teaching job because of their attitude. Whoever taught these kids that this is the right way to do things ought to be given enlightenment lessons on the proper way to use our constitutional right to free expression. Democracy in its purest and finest form back in the days of the free-wheeling Athenians in Greece, wasn't meant to be like this. We have democracy simply because each person's views are different from each other. It was not a license though for anyone to freely trample on other people's rights. That is already considered an "unschooled" behavior, like mad cows let loose from a corral after being contained inside for days.
But even as you ponder what that blogger suggests, here's another entry that makes for sobering reading. A Nagueno in the Blogosphere is one of my favorite blogs. Its written by Willy Prilles, Jr., a consultant on education to the city government of Naga. Read his entry, which is a reproduction of his weekly column in a Bicol newspaper, on the true state of Philippine education:
Four years ago (the earliest data available), only 67 of every 100 pupils that enrolled in Grade I managed to finish Grade VI; as of last school year, it went down to 57. Which means only around 6 of every 10 children entering our elementary schools manage to graduate. The situation is much worse in high school. Six years ago, 71 of every 100 First Year students were able to secure a high school diploma; as of last school year, it went down to 54. And here is the rub: remember that only 60% of our children are able to complete elementary and eligible to move on to high school. If we factor this in, the real completion rate all the way from Grade I is this: for every 100 pupils who enter Grade I, only 30 will eventually finish high school. The DepEd used to compute this particularly damning statistic, but it stopped doing so starting in 2005. To summarize: of every 100 six or seven year olds that are supposed to enter Grade I, only 84 are able to do so; of these 84 only 57 are able to finish Grade VI and move on to First Year; and of these 57, only 30 will be able to graduate with a high school diploma.
Read it and weep.
Although I tried not to say it in class yesterday, but I finally broke out and confessed to them that I might lose my teaching job because of their attitude.Whoever taught these kids that this is the right way to do things ought to be given enlightenment lessons on the proper way to use our constitutional right to free expression.Democracy in its purest and finest form back in the days of the free-wheeling Athenians in Greece, wasn't meant to be like this.We have democracy simply because each person's views are different from each other....  Six years ago, 71 of every 100 First Year students were able to secure a high school diploma; as of last school year, it went down to 54.And here is the rub: remember that only 60% of our children are able to complete elementary and eligible to move on to high school....  The DepEd used to compute this particularly damning statistic, but it stopped doing so starting in 2005.To summarize: of every 100 six or seven year olds that are supposed to enter Grade I, only 84 are able to do so; of these 84 only 57 are able to finish Grade VI and move on to First Year; and of these 57, only 30 will be able to graduate with a high school diploma.Read it and weep.

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This page contains a single entry by Manuel L. Quezon III published on July 26, 2007 6:35 PM.

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