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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Quality education as the ultimate tool for development

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It’s to be a means for the achievement of the much cherished ideals that all people hold sacred. Virtues such as tolerance, peace and progress cannot be a reality when the foundations that define our minds are not at par with pristine knowledge that’s inculcated through proper methods of education.

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In our times, precisely of post-modernity, education has been defined through the lens of corporate capitalism and the big profit machine, which can be seen in how people vie for the best grades so as to secure the best jobs. Once education began to be viewed as a tool to maximise only the material potentials of our communities, it becomes a norm for people to act flagrantly and without ethical regards to the unwritten laws that come with a proper education that elevates the mind and inspires the soul.

 

Our country has seen the rise of many forms of this problem. With almost all the pamphlets prepared by teachers in our schools proclaiming the message of being the best guide to passing exams easily, it’s a reality that cannot be overlooked any longer. The Gambia being an underdeveloped country needs her people to be able to grab the tools that will develop her, and there is no better tool that can be used to make that a reality than quality education.

 

The mass failures that are now prevalent in the junior and senior schools are a direct by-product of that mentality of going to school only to bag good grades. To avert this very disturbing problem we must, as needed be engage in redefining what it means to go to school and get an education. We need a redefinition of the terms that underline the pedagogical process.  The notion of material success is not evil in itself but when it’s divorced from a moral and spiritual vision then it becomes antithetical to the very foundations of education that was meant to create a cadre of conscious beings. 

 

A holistic learning system that integrates all values which hints towards the promise and fullness of human perfection is what’s required to kick start  the development of any society that is craving for advancement and progress. The ethos that define the failures of many countries in their development drive is the fact that while they invest in education, they hardly make efforts to invest in that quality methodology that will bring with it the confluence of the ideals mentioned above. Building structures or schools all year round is no guarantee that we will get there. The quantification of schools, it seems, has only made it possible for every charlatan to start a profit making venture as opposed to the programme of developing the students inwardly and outwardly.

 

Reviving the spirit of a proper educational system that is etched in the traditional setup of wholeness in imparting knowledge, wisdom and understanding is imperative and cannot be done without if we are to create that grand narrative that would be the catalyst to the developmental process. The Gambia like any other country cannot make it to general prosperity without the wholesome, quality education for our young.

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