If I had a way I would just have our education changed to train our children to be productive and useful with or without certificates or grades.
1) Just do away with brigades because the only thing different from JC of Senior Secondary, those children do is the practical, the theory of the course they are studying and the technical drawings. So just turn them into secondary schools.
2) Incoparate theories and practicals of all the courses in brigades into secondary education.
3) Only 3 subjects become compulsory. That will be Maths, English and Moral education. But carry the same wait in grading like all other subjects. Maths to help people with simple calculations and understanding of money. English for obvious reasons. Moral education would be not the current syllabus but a very improved syllabus that empower the child to improve his SQ and EQ to support his IQ. The moral education will teach the child about his or her invoroment, build her character, make her to tolerate diversity. Understand different cultures, languages and religions of his or he country. Under the revised Moral education children will learn about ethics, gorvanence and conducts.
4) Then we have options in different groups. There should be business subjects disigned for those who grow up to be in finance and administration. Science for those who grow up to be in sciences. The we have engenering basics that covers Construction, Mechanical, Auto and Electrical. A JC drop out should be in a position of drawing a simple two bedroom house plan, build it and install electricity. Then we have Agriculture combined with tourism and other cultural production activities. Then we should have Sports, Arsts and Culture.
5) All children should in their option have a practical subject which would be a fall back strategy when they didn't do well in their exams to further their studies.
6)The practical subject should be real be productive. They should build their own classes, plaugh their food, keep animals like dairy cows for milk. Sell and those doing business courses do practical accounting of such.
We should just swallow our pride and rivist Patrick Van Resburg and Dr KK model of Education. The Education with production. Kana our Form Five drop out is just useless. Can't just milk a goat or build a mud house for him or herself. That is were we breed poor people who are just ready to receive hand outs. I always see when TV shows people who have benefited on this house appeal. Able bodied people who still making babies but just can't get clay soil and grass to build nice mud houses. They will be crowded in one delpedated old mud house built by granny whom they are lucky as the house appeal will be targeting her. And that won't stop until we change our education system.
Thinking is not Expensive or painful. It does not speak English
*LENYATSO is a political activist under the Umbrella for Democratic Change (UDC).