Thursday, July 18, 2013

ID numbers for Preschoolers

*Let's Keep this dream alive*

An article in the New Zealand Herald, written by Nicholas Jones; talks about a plan to assign students starting at age 3, ID numbers to keep track of  enrollment  and  attendance. The preschool teachers would be “de facto benefit police,” meaning they will be responsible for entering the information which can cause their parents to lose government benefits if they do not meet their obligations.

First of all, you cannot force a parent to educate their child (ren) and whereas this seems like the best thing for the child. In the long run the child will not benefit from this and it will affect them in many ways. If their parent is denied benefits they could lose their place to live, food and their social connection within a community where they feel safe and belong.

The government is also putting the teachers in an impossible situation. The biggest part of Early Childhood is trust. For a parent to leave their child in a strangers care they must first trust them. How can they trust a teacher or administrator that they feel is watching them to determine if they are meeting their obligations so that they can continue to receive benefits?

Secondly, even if they are forced into education, it is not a guarantee that the importance of education would be reiterated at home, which is a big part of a student’s success.

I think that the money used to start this program should be put back into the Early Childhood system. This would create more subsidized programs for underprivileged students and workshops for parents so they understand the importance of education and the resources needed to succeed, they can in turn, encourage the same in their children.

People are not where they are in life because they necessarily want to be there. It is usually based on circumstances; things that impacted their lives to the point that they feel as though there is no way out. Being inclined with survival skills as we all are; they move into a survival mode and unfortunately it becomes the only out in their life, that is, to survive from one day to another.

If educators appeal to the hope for life, where these things can changed with a plan that they can follow, we won’t have to force them into education. They will come willingly and in turn, we would be able to stop the cycle of hopefulness in them and in their children.

Ms. Darla <3

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