Sunday, July 21, 2024
Sunday, July 21, 2024
HomeEducatorsChalk Dust.

Chalk Dust.

Education is the key to success…So were we constantly reminded only to discover later on that there is more than one padlock securing that much exalted treasure! The marketplace is definitely no four wall confinement with chalk-dusted dictators structuring every next move but an open space in which each being is constantly striving to survive through sellng out, come what may. Students’ transition from the blackboard to the marketplace takes a different toll on each one; some are tortoises propped up to the top, others are snails slowly struggling up the ladder, others are eagles flying from one peak to another while the rest are frogs, croaking in agony at being stuck in the mud. The blackboard is undoubtedly mocking the marketplace place in Uganda for some of the following reasons:

Education is key but it is not the only key to success in the marketplace

There is a high degree of replication encouraged in schools rather than sparking innovations from what is taught. Any student in Uganda can testify to getting an answer wrong because they did not state it as was taught by the teacher or the textbook. Our education system applauds the ability to reproduce more than the power to enhance the existing to meet current demands, which is much sought after in the market.

Undoubtedly, uniformity of test responses has its advantages, blood will always be red and humans are forever mammals but the cram work sadly nurtures a rigidity in students that stalls any form of creative thinking when direly needed, which is so often nowadays. There is greater need to enhance more innovations to navigate the market, for example, for the academic year 2021/2022 Makerere University scrapped 19 undergraduate courses, a move aimed at encouraging more student research than replaying of recorded breakthroughs.

Additionally, though alterations have been made in the education syllabuses at all study levels by the National Curriculum Development Center (NCDC), the very subjects that could equip students to contribute to the country’s most profitable sectors are classified as optional. The NCDC Ordinary Level Curriculum classifies Agriculture, Entrepreneurship, Economics and Computer Studies as subjects one can miss out on yet Agriculture has proven to be the backbone of Uganda’s economy while Economics and Commerce applied in business management bring in more financial returns than Shakespeare’s works or the organisation of the Maji Maji rebellion. Expectant graduates display their best replicas of eloquent English, flawless certificates and fluency in foreign history only to have these go stale because of the lack of practical skills that can lure and retain the employers. There is a need to enhance hands-on learning not only in scientific laboratory experiments but also in the Arts through frequent exposé to existing market spaces and reinforcing creativity in skills such as writing, arts and crafts, and home economics through competitions and internships.

Furthermore, the rampant use of Technology in Uganda is another culprit; Technology is meddler, presenting new ideas and functions everyday, which the majority of schools cannot keep up with. While in school, those fortunate to engage with computers learnt its basic uses for communication and storage. Out in the market, extensive usage applies that includes software development, monitoring performance and tracking transactions. While students are still interacting with the Pentium IV, touch screens and wireless devices are currently basking in the spotlight but not long before Bill Gates invents another supremacy. Technology has already proven vital to the marketplace because of its efficiency and high economic returns therefore current and previous learners will always be tasked to pivot from the dictation of the blackboard to satisfying the need presented by the actual buyers.

Lastly, the absence of career guidance is another aspect mocking Ugandan scholars’ after-school success. A learner tamed by the fear of displeasing study sponsors, mockery from their peers or the obligation to carry on the family’s glorious profession endures countless hours learning things that lead them to a dead end. When this student enters the market, they might be equipped with skills, none of which is lucrative to the buyer simply because they never received guidance on which path to pursue that not only aligns with their interests but is in high demand. Take this example: studying to become a general health physician is a good career path but specialization into complex but lucrative fields such as neuroscience, molecular gastronomy and plastic surgery is currently much sought after and pays handsomely. Sadly though, even when skills acquired compete favourably, this marketer of a career that he or she is not passionate about will soon be phased out because of complacency. This absence of career guidance has led many to wasting time circling around different career paths or finding a niche in a profession whose skills would
never have required as much time to master as that wasted glaring at the blackboard.

To sum up, the blackboard is in no way a total disservice to the students; there are many lessons it confers that can be carried forth such as knowledge of the outside world and things past, basic calculations and comprehensible English. However, bear in mind that the market, where all previously learned faces its greatest tempest, requires more adaptability than replicability therefore it remains crucial that education curriculums are adjusted to not only attract but also sustain the students in their chosen career paths.
Education is key but it is not the only key to success in the marketplace

As a writer with 3 years of experience, I have honed my skills in a variety of topics, including technology, health, and education. My writing has been featured on various blogs and magazines in Uganda, Hong Kong, and Thailand, showcasing my versatility and ability to connect with diverse audiences. I am passionate about sharing knowledge and informing others through my writing, always striving to make a positive impact on my readers.



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