Discipline is greatly deteriorating in schools. Most people think discipline is punishment and so resort to disciplining by punishing. The fact is that both are two separate identities.
Schools have deliberately ignored discipline wherever it is supposed to be applied and so everything comes to a standstill.
When at school, teachers handle different categories of students many of whom are totally different where the environment becomes the last resort.
You find a situation where a student fails to do an exercise or a test and then the administration resorts to sending him back home.
Tests are given to students and are meant to test students’ ability at the end of the day.
And then a student is supposed to be punished at all cost when they do something wrong.
Punishment is also meant to teach the wrongdoer a lesson not to repeat the same case. Students should also be taught the importance of punishment.
I was embarrassed last week when I met a student on the way home from school. He told me that he was suspended for not doing a test that was given to the whole class by a biology teacher.
The students were supposed to be in class for the test by 8:00am in the morning.
Out of 37 students the teacher only found 10. So he decided to give out the test, after which he reported the whole saga to the headmaster.
The headmaster went to the class and warned the students, after which he decided to give them an indefinite stay away suspension, not excluding those who were in class and did the test.
Now headmaster, if you decided to punish students for not doing the test, what did you punish those who did the test for? And what lesson were you teaching them?
Yes, they are told to go home for missing a biology test, but still they will have lost a geography or history lesson.
I think it will no longer serve the purpose it was meant to serve.
As a teacher, you need to find out why the students decided to miss your test and try to solve the problem with them.
And the headmaster also needs to solve the problem if he is approached instead of creating more problems even for innocent students.
As the saying goes that charity begins at home, parents need to take the responsibility to shape up their children, and teachers should also help the students as their parents too.
Punishment may be positive or negative, and negative punishment has nothing to do with discipline at all.
Positive punishment might have something to do with discipline, where the bigger part of discipline is reward.
Schools should look at discipline as a training that will correct, mold or perfect the mental and moral wellbeing of a child.
So they should discipline the students at the right time which will in the end give them the necessary freedom to enjoy their future as successful adults.