COME ON FRIENDS, LET’S DO IT!

Date: 24.01.21

Let us now be less reform-shy and a ‘wee’ bit bolder.

EDUCATION

PSAC cut-off marks for all subjects is 30 on a hundred. It seems at first sight that this standard can easily be achieved. First of all, by just throwing the dart (pikpoul), multiple choice questions can yield about 10 marks; then a few lucky guesses can give another 10 marks; finally, standardisation magicians at the M.E.S will transform 20 raw marks into standardised 30. Please note that rigorous sound pedagogy tells us that 25% of marks obtained from multiple choice questions should be disregarded as they may be the results of ‘pikpoul’ skill or chance but our excellent examiners have chosen to ignore this for reasons known only to them. This means that with about 10 real raw marks, a candidate may obtain the official pass mark of 30 out of 100. Consequently, those with borderline pass in the different PSAC subjects are, what we can call, SEMILITERATE if we adopt a generous and compassionate attitude. What about the thousands who fail to reach the official pass mark after 6-7 years of schooling? They are simply NONLITERATE and NON-NUMERATE.

What is the cause of this? Simply because our politicians in government and opposition, our parents, our teachers and socio-cultural leaders love to TEACH THE UNKNOWN THROUGH THE UNKNOWN. They have never heard of mother tongue literacy, numeracy and acquisition of knowledge. It is a mistake to say that a child has failed. NO! School has failed; governments have failed; society has failed. We are killing the brain of our children.

It was a good idea to start prevocational classes to keep unsuccessful CPE/PSAC children off the streets but little was done to motivate them by making the course inspiring, purposeful and meaningful. The prevocational course must be revamped.

  1.  Medium of instruction: Mauritian (MC) and English;
  2.  Main subject: bilingual literacy (Mauritian and English);
  3.  Other subjects: numeracy; French, general knowledge (basic science and economics);
  4.  Extracurricular activities.

HEALTH & LGBT+

Can we go on hiding our heads in the sand? More and more countries have made CBD oil legal because it is not psychoactive. This quality makes CBD an appealing option for those who are looking for relief from pain and other symptoms without the mind-altering effects of marijuana or certain pharmaceutical drugs. It helps patients suffering from, inter alia, sciatic nerve pain, inflammation, PPS, arthritis, multi sclerosis etc.

Though we must continue to research the efficacy and safety of CBD, results from recent studies suggest that CBD may provide a safe, powerful natural treatment for many health issues.

Since our constitution protects all citizens from discrimination of all sorts, including sex, we wonder why LGBT+ people are still discriminated against because of their sexual orientation. The situation is changing throughout the world. Pope Francis has just taken position in favour of gay rights; the constitutions of South Africa and Nepal, the Supreme Court of India, among others, do not treat homosexual relationship as a crime; in many modern countries same-sex marriage is celebrated. Why do we in Mauritius continue to be, “raat ke randi, din me chokri” (nighttime bed-partner, daytime holy sister).

Is it not time to accept the inevitable and plan reforms to make life better?

 

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