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#539: Haitian teachers: Fonda comments

From: Dave Fonda <fonphoto@snip.net>

Subject:     Re: #520: Haitian Prejudices: Wilentz replies to Simidor 
Sent:        9/20/99 10:28 PM
To:          Robert Corbett, bcorbett@netcom.com


I'm coming into this discussion late and am not familiar with the whole of it's direction, but in regards to Haitian teachers and their capability to teach French, it seems to me to be, in the long run, irrelevant.  

French is essentially a dying language in Haiti.  It may not go quickly, and it may not go quietly, but go it will.  Kreyol is the language of the people, and, more and more, English is the lamguage of business (thoughout the world) and Haitian students would be better served by being taught English.  The remaining domains of French in Haiti are government and aristocrisy.  Despite its long, long history as a tool of exclusion, its tenure is limited.  (Yes, I¹m an unabashed optimist, but I feel that the trend is inevitable.)

That issue aside, the greater issue is the basic techniques that the majority of Haitian teachers use.  I will say up-front that I am no authority on education, and  I¹m not qualified to argue the details of the change, but it doesn¹t take an authority to see that teaching by rote is not the most effectual method.  The most basic aspects of the Haitian educational system need to be changed. Haiti desperately needs motivated, self-confident, innovative thinkers and doers.  The traditional Haitian education does not produce such minds;  such minds as there are emerge despite the current educational system.

So, what is Haiti¹s most pressing  educational issue?  

Teaching its teachers to teach.

R E S P E C T;

     Dave Fonda

F O N D A   P H O T O G R A P H I C
Corporate, Industrial & Documentary
 610.279.8525      610.279.5978-f

'Sa je pa we, ke pa tounen.'

'What the eye doesn't see, doesn't move the heart.'