LETTER: Don’t blame the students alone, our teachers are also part of the problem



In recent times, we have observed that the moral fibre of our secondary schools are falling apart. The schools are becoming plagued with an escalation of delinquent students who are ending up in problems with their teachers.

In hindsight, many of these students are considered to be violent & perhaps are perceived to be indoctrinated by a poorly cultured home. Teachers on the other hand, seems to operate in a manner that on the school’s compound they run things and things do not run them and whatever they say & do, they are always right with impunity.

As a teacher myself,  I certainly share the sentiment that teachers should always be respected by a student regardless of the situation that the student is faced with. Simultaneously, teachers should also treat students with mutual respect inspite of how they feel towards the student.

I am sure that we all agree that the homes &  communities as to where the students live,  contributes alot towards the students’ behavior & perhaps in shaping them into who they are.

It is for this reason why I am not in favor of  those students attending primary schools  within the depressed communities (eg Greenbay) are  ALL sent to the nearest secondary school to where they live, after passing a common entrance exam (eg OCS). Obviously, the violent behaviors inherited from the community’s culture, usually follow the students and where there is a high concentration of students with such similar behaviors then those behaviors will always create problems.

Instead, I would prefer to see that our education system  implement a method to integrate the students who are coming from schools within the indigent communities with students  attending schools in the more eminent areas.
The standards & discipline of the latter are always better & superior.

In my view, our school system needs an overhaul. Parents should not be fully blamed for their children’s crude behavior. Infact, some parents have gone the extra mile to instill in them manners, values & respect but peer pressure within the schools creates a great distraction.

We are now living in a world with a new dispensation. It’s all about Virtualization! Technology, specifically social media has dominantly customized our children’s behaviour. It has created for the child, a greater sense of belonging & a platform to be verbally liberal so that they can express themselves as they please.

Such behavior is now been traversed into the classroom and so,  the student’s self ego, their mannerism & their entire disposition have changed.

To add more oil to the fire, many teachers of today are young and are lacking the professionalism for the job. As a result, conflicts develop between teachers & students. The work ethics of these young  teachers especially the females are very poor. They wear to the job skimpy / tight outfits, body tattoos,  tongue & nose piercings as a part of their everyday dress code. Sometimes, speaking frequently to students in a condescending manner becomes the norm.

Of course, there are some roses among the thorns however, to me, gone are those days that teachers are no longer reprimanded for improper work ethics. Gone are those days that teachers no longer show mutual respect to students and gone are those days where teachers are no longer good role models to our students, especially to our 4th & 5th formers.




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  1. Very interesting piece…hope we can have some meaning discourse on this excalating issue…where our children and parents are being demonized.

    • There are good and bad parents, good and bad children and good and bad teachers. Actually, everyone has good and bad in them. Some display good more often, some display bad more often. The problem is every time an issue arises people start generalizing groups… All teachers this, all parents that. Then people get offended for being misjudged. Unless there is evidence of a widespread problem, situations should be judged based on the people involved only at that moment only. And, facts should be known before the judging starts because it is easy to misjudge a situation that you are not in everyday. Probably why the Good Book say “Judge Not” in general. That’s why our legal system allows everyone to give their testimony before guilt is decided. In social media, people want to be judge, jury, and executioner, all without enough information.

  2. A very interesting perspective of the crisis the schools are experiencing… Teachers are definitely not left out of the formula

  3. Sir you are talking about degrading attitudes sir, not a student missing a class or two, a student getting a few c grades, maybe the occasional bulling another student, no, we are talking fighting and riots. What part are you saying the teacher has to play in students rioting and gang violence? Make it make sense. I would not sit here and blame any teacher for these kids that are just straight up gangsters and come to school for the sole purpose of encroaching on the other students that are trying to learn and those who go to school for the sole purpose of learning. I would blame the parents more than anything else, for everything starts at home. If a child has not learn the concept of ” honor your mother and father” what make you think any teacher can teach that or curtail these tyrant kids? Teachers are there to teach academics, not to baby sit young adults who are rotten from the moment they leave their homes. The problem is that we have come way to soft of unruly kids, and these days we give them a pass on everything. We need to go back to the days when the adult is the adult, and the kid is the kid, not the other way around.

  4. I prefer for the teachers to run the school instead of the students. Students running the school does not bode well for the education system.

    I disagree that students from poorly cultured homes should be forced to go to areas that are high in discipline. This will lead to many problems when the poorly cultured student is being disciplined. Such students are not accustomed to discipline. What needs to be done is that the parent and the community needs to have a culture of discipline so that students can benefit.

    Many people grew up in poverty but were never poorly cultured because they were taught manners, respect and dignity. This is lacking with students today even though they have a US$1,000 phone in their hand and US$300 shoes on their feet. I know many people who went to school in cheap shoes and are good students.

    I agree with you that the tongue rings, tattoos and other body modifications mixed with revealing clothing makes the female teachers look somewhat thottish. I guess it is the new culture with Rhianna, Nikki Minaj and Britney Spears etc.

    I think that teachers who get pregnant out of wedlock should be removed from the profession. It sets a bad example to kids that the teachers are loose in their private dealings.

    • @Bilbo from All Saints…”I think teachers who get pregnant out of wedlock should be removed from the profession.”

      One question for you, should married men who have children while happily married be castrated and stoned to death?

      The #BASTARDIZATION continues and bitches like you will continue to be mentally sodomized by the indoctrination’s of the Church.
      It’s not surprising, that the Children are becoming angrier and angrier at the Society which is molding them.

      Ras Smood aka Jumbee_Picknee
      De ‘ole Dutty Peg_Foot Bastard

      Vere C. Edwards

    • @Bilbo Considering that these days, the majority of children are born out of wedlock, I don’t see how such teachers would have any more influence on children’s morals than their own parents do. Teachers are there to teach a subject. Their personal lives are mostly irrelevant. From a Christian point of view, people can be redeemed. Why should a person be punished for that for life for a one time event? What message would that send to children? Especially since only women would be punished while the men involved could carry on working pretending that they never did anything wrong.

      • And quite frankly in a country that has Carnival and Fetes with grownups dressed all kinds of ways doing all kinds of “dancing” all over the place, I highly doubt that married or unmarried Teachers make any difference to children’s moral outlook.

  5. You hear that teachers… You all are the problem in schools and will always be. After you tolerate so much from people’s children… Feed them, talk to them, give them school supplies, try to teach them… I am urging all teachers to find gainful employment… Find a job that values your effort and your qualifications. Leave these parents to teach their own children because they are the BEST. Teachers are only glorified babysitters that will never be good enough because THEY are the problem in schools. Teachers, get a REAL job!

  6. Some teachers are to be blamed. Yes, they are paid to teach yet perform so many other duties and are underpaid. Kudos to those who are hard working. However, some are to be blamed. Some teachers treat children like if they are trash. If only phones were permitted in the classroom some children would record the harsh talks teachers bear on students who only ask a simple question, the bullish behaviour some teachers respond with, the cry down of students infront of other students, the mental torture pressed on students is appalling! I have witnessed this! If only the phone could come out of my pocket so that I could video tape this one female teacher at a so called “prestigious” high school. Some of these teachers do not have any respect for students. Some of them send Whatsapp messages on group chats and belittle students, praise students who does well whom they have helped and neglect the other students. Some teachers are to be blamed! There are those teachers who are really doing an excellent job BUT dem rest SMH!!!! Some of the principals are to be blamed too because some of them turn a blind eye and allow a lot of things to escalate. For some of them, the teachers are always right and that is just damn wrong.
    In response to Fitzroy, all stakeholders are responsible, but I am a firm believer that training the child begins at home.

  7. Well said these young teachers need to be trained properly not just go and get a certified then say you r a teacher look at the dress code teachers are protraying now adays the young boys are watching them sexually. And the same teachers don’t have self respect . The teachers should get a strick dress code tongue piercing nose piercing etc is not apart of the uniform tattoos should be covered or even better no teachers shouldn’t have tattoos they need. To lead by example. Not just sit down and get paid

    • Some of the nowadays old or senior teachers are just sending the wrong message to the younger teachers and because some really need nurturing themselves, they have no choice but to emulate what they see from their seniors.
      Greenbay and OCS would have produced great citizens and professionals from Lawyers, Doctors, Politicians, Teachers, Nurses , Pharmacists and you name it. Teachers cannot do it alone. Some teachers give of their all and have sleepless nights just to ensure that their students ate successful..
      Too often you have those parents who sit back idly and allow the children to grow up so fast that they cannot control them from as young as primary school age. When they get to Secondary school, we’ll teachers are no longer spoon feeding them , as they would often remark about Primary School teachers, so students have to struggle to make that transition and nurturing goes out of the window. A subject teacher is absent and another teacher with a free period stays in staff room and children are in classrooms by themselves. The devil finds work for idle hands and we must always ensure that jist as teachers should be accountable for their students at school, parents should also.be made to carry out their functions and not just show up at school when their is a problem other than learning problem.
      I have seen too many of our parents who only show a bit of concern when their children are in Grade 6 and Form 5.. We have to support our children every step of their educational journey and let them feel the love and appreciation. Don’t curse teachers at home and not investigate matters, your children feed on your energy when they go to school.

      Everybody needs to work as a team.

  8. The teachers are part of the problem but they are also attempting to solve the problem in the only way they know how. This result in the student becoming even more recalcitrant and truant. In many cases the student is experiencing the “discomfort” of growing into adulthood literally and figuratively and may not even understand his own behaviour so in a strange way he is also trying to solve his problem. Everyone is trying to solve the issue including our lawmen, lawmakers, the “village” and the community. Maybe to solve it we also need to involve trained professionals in psychology and human behaviour along with the other stake holders to achieve a permanent lasting solution to this vexing problem.

    • The Ministry of Education does not have a “dress or moral code” Teachers are left to themselves to determine what to wear etc. Everyone’s idea of morality is different. If the MOE does not have the proper structure in place where dressing etc., is concerned then teachers are going to do what they see as best for them in every area of their teaching profession. Blame the MOE for not being a structured place.

  9. Let’s not forget when a child reaches to the adolescent stage they are now independent thinkers & making decisions of their own. Therefore, communication between teachers, parents and a child should be in a lateral (across) fashion rather than a vertical ( down) manner.

  10. I know of two teachers who taught similar difficult subjects. One was an ok teacher. She was pleasant enough, fair with her students, and tried her best to help all of them reach their highest potential under the circumstances. She wasn’t buddy buddy with the students though. She wasn’t their personal confidant. She didn’t get all involved in their personal business. She worked normal hours, but she answered their panicked homework messages out of hours as best as possible. She gave them advice on accessing resources, but did not spend a lot out of pocket on them. Her classes were interesting, but not the world’s most entertaining class ever. The other teacher was there from the crack of dawn, stayed late, and came in on weekends. She was super close to students and gave advice and support on any and everything. She was the type to pay for supplies for whoever needed it. She tried to come up with the best and most entertaining presentation on every topic. She graded tons of work and returned it more quickly than the other teacher. She volunteered for everything at the school while the other teacher only got involved maybe once a year. Everyone loved her while the 1st teacher was often criticised for this or that. Both got similar exam results for students. After 2 1/2 years, the 2nd teacher quit to do something completely different. The first one stayed for years and years, doing extra work filling in for her after she left, training replacements who came and went, keeping the programme stable. There is good and bad in every profession. Too often people expect perfection from teachers in this difficult environment. Those who try to be perfect get burnt out fast. People should be grateful for those who try to find a way to do what is needed year in and year out to help the children succeed under the circumstances even if it is not done to perfection.

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