Teacher’s Mind : This term students must carry report cards home

Spain has won the FIFA 2010 World Cup and more importantly a good number of schools have started doing their end of term examinations. While students in South Africa were allowed a month’s holiday so that they could follow the World Cup tournament students in Rwanda were never accorded such luxury as studies continued alongside the football matches.

Spain has won the FIFA 2010 World Cup and more importantly a good number of schools have started doing their end of term examinations.

While students in South Africa were allowed a month’s holiday so that they could follow the World Cup tournament students in Rwanda were never accorded such luxury as studies continued alongside the football matches. For this reason, no student should blame their poor performance on the World Cup.

Every end of term, students have to sit for exams as a way of evaluating what was taught during the term and to prepare them for future examinations especially the ones at the national level.

It is very important for students to endeavour to perform to the best of their abilities. Of course they need to know that this can only be achieved if a student took time to attend classes and later spared time to revise the notes in their books.

When the school term eventually comes to an end, each school going child MUST be given a report card. This crucial document is then presented to the parent or guardian as evidence that the school fees paid did not go to waste.

I have categorically used the word ‘must’ because a parent surely deserves a report of what happened while their child was at school. Any parent who thinks otherwise is simply a disgrace to the notion of parenthood.

It is common for people to ask for a ticket when they pay for a bus ride or to ask for the bill after taking a few beers in the bar. It is for the same reason that parents should always demand to see a report card at the end of each school term.

The second term of the school calendar is usually the longest of all and therefore schools should be able to fit all their programmes therein. I am saying all this because I know of schools that are not ashamed to send their students back home without report cards.

Such schools will go ahead and tell students and parents to collect the report cards from the school a week after the term has officially closed.

This is not only unfair to the parents but also demeaning. It is like paying for a shirt in the shop and you are told to go home and come back to pick it up a week later!

During my school days, the health of one’s report card pretty much determined whether the holidays would be fun or not. At the beginning of the school term, your parent would promise you all sorts of nice things once you performed well. Small gifts as well as the liberty to visit your school friends were some of the incentives put forward by our parents.

However, in case you performed poorly then you were not even allowed to leave the house for the duration of the holiday. You would spend your holiday doing more chores and the rest of the time would be for you to do the reading that you failed to do while at school. I can only wonder how a parent is supposed to relate with a child during the holiday minus a report card.

The last week after exams before the term closes officially should best be used for extra-curricular activities like games and club activities.

The tendency for schools to send children home a week before the official closing date is nothing but theft of a week’s school fees.

Those concerned about this from the Education Ministry should take punitive measures against schools that are involved in this broad daylight fraud by greedy school owners.

ssenyonga@gmail.com

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