By Mafugi Ceesay
Abubacarr Jallow, the principal of Gambia College has called on communities and the school systems to drop the cane and use alternative means of behavior modification so that children will love going to school.
The use of cane by teachers in Gambian public schools is quite rampant, and concerns are raised whether it is in fact necessary or effective in helping school-going children learn.
And Principal Jallow said the adoption of violent means to control children is not wise.
In an exclusive interview with The Standard, on the sidelines of a CPA training for twenty Gambia College lecturers on positive disciplinary methods, he said his institution is hopeful of inculcating new teaching values into their school curriculum.
He said he would like his staff to understand and appreciate this philosophy and shun resorting to corporal punishment and use other methods to control those children who may have behavioral or emotional difficulties.
He said: “This training is going to expose teachers to such approaches which have been tested and is working in different parts of the world. It will help the teachers to be able to manage their classrooms better and be stress-free as well.”
Kadijatou Jallow, program officer, CPA, said the training of 20 lecturers is a follow-up to a training they initially had.
She also postulated that corporal punishment was not the best way to train children, adding that people are coming from different settings and communities and these are issues that follow children to the classrooms.
Ms Jallow said the program aims at introducing the PDET concept to the school of education and the Gambia College and get support and commitment to its inclusion in curriculums.
“It will also raise awareness on child rights, child protection and promote positive discipline methods in every day teaching in the teaching training college of Gambia College.”
She said it will also enhance the awareness and knowledge of lecturers at the School of Education, Gambia College, on the diverse forms of abuse students experience in different settings, with a special focus on the school setting.
The workshop was funded by Save the Children International, under the Sida-CSO Project being implemented by CPA