The Instant Creation of Emerging Teachers


It was a sober meeting attended by several representatives from the municipal Ministry of Education. A murmur passed among the parents, seated on the same plastic chairs used by their children in the morning. The date was approaching for the announcement of who would continue their studies at the senior secondary school; it appeared that at this meeting they would tell us the number of pre-university or technical school slots assigned to our school site. Thus, the news at the end about “comprehensive general teachers” took us by surprise, because we had come to believe that their existence would be extended until our great-grandchildren reached puberty.

Educating adolescents – through accelerated courses – to teach classes ranging from grammar to mathematics, turned out to be a categorical failure. Not because of the element of youth, which is always welcome in any profession, but because of the speed of their instruction in teaching and the lack of interest many of them had in such a noble endeavor. Faced with the exodus of education professionals to other sectors with more attractive earnings, the emerging teachers program was developed; with it the already ailing quality of Cuban education fell through the floor. The children came home saying that in 1895 Cuba had lived through “a civil war” and that geometric figures had something called “voldes” which we parents understood to mean “edges.” I particularly remember one of these instant educators who confessed to his students on the first day of class that they should, “Study hard so you don’t end up like me, someone who ended up being a teacher because I didn’t take good notes.”

On top of that the tele-classes arrived, to fill a very high percentage of the school hours from the coldness of a screen that cannot interact. The idea was to make up, with these lessons transmitted by television, for the lack of training of those standing in front of the students. The tele-teacher substituted in many schools for the flesh-and-blood version, while teacher salaries increased symbolically, but never exceeded the equivalent of 30 dollars a month. Teaching became, even more than being a priest, a sacrifice. Thus, standing in front of the blackboard were people who had not mastered spelling or the history of their own country. There were young people who signed a pledge to become teachers, but who already regretted it after one week of work. The incidents and educational deformations that this procedure brought with it are written in the hidden book of failure of revolutionary plans and ridiculous production goals that are never met, with the difference that in this case we are not talking about tons of sugar or bushels of beans, but about the education of our children.

I breathe a sigh of relief that this long experiment in emergent education has ended. However, I do not envision the day in which all those people with preparation to teach leave the wheel of their taxis, come out from behind the bar, or exchange the tedium of working at home to return to the classroom. At least I could feel more relaxed if, in place of a television screen, Teo could receive all his classes from a corporeal teacher with a mastery of the content. I think that in this case we will have to wait for the great-grandchildren.

About these ads

107 thoughts on “The Instant Creation of Emerging Teachers

  1. Teachers play an important role in our lives;their like our guardians when our parent’s aren’t around for the time we’re in our schools.Their influence on each & every child life whose been to school is immense;from remembering them for their personality,to their class in their profession,teacher’s are very important,& it is also important they know what their doing.
    Here private schools,or bedroom schools as they’re called,for they’re basically residential houses converted into schools,are all the rage.Not only do the inexperienced principals & teachers earn a bundle of money,they lack the dedication & skills to teach the children the they should be taught.Being a teacher isn’t just about knowing your subject,it’s also about knowing your student’s well enough to get them interested in that subject,or else if you dont,then how will they excel?

  2. Hey Albie – so posting the words of Sanchez is parroting? What opinions about Cuba am I using other people’s words to support??!!

    Why don’t you have the guts to actually comment on Sanchez’s words that prior to knowing that they were hers you abused!! How stupid and mindless was that?

    And unlike you I spend much time in Cuba and thus experience a variety of things. Although what that has to do with ending the US embargo/travel bans only you could explain although bet you don’t!

    January 28 2010 , Cuban blogger, writer, and photographer Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo interview with Sanchez:

    “For this reason I support an immediate opening to allow all Americans to travel to Cuba, the end of the “blockade,” the end of the damaging hostilities of the Cold War, and in particular the complete elimination of anything that limits contact between the citizens of both countries.”

    http://www.allvoices.com/contr…..ama-speaks

  3. juancito:
    still parroting …
    I guess the impunity of anonimity is what supports your courage & levity (if you have).
    You are passing opinions about a Cuba you have not seen, about sacrifices not suffered & indignities that you can’t imagine, supporting your statements with other people’s words.
    So stay sitting in front of your computer trying to think what cleaver thing you can say next; you may be having fun … but remember to say “thank you” for having the freedom to exercise your rights, without considering if you deserve them or not.
    I think & believe Yubano @#93 is right … personally I believe in giving others the benefit of the doubt, but in your case: your are not worth it.
    Simply because you are just blowing hot air … instigating & trying to be (in your own mind) cleaver to satisfy your own little pleassures.
    Having not experienced what you parrot, lacking the kindness and love of a patriot or the respect for other people’s pligts yet demostrating the arrogance of the entitled you are not worth attention.

  4. Bertie says…”I hope you realize that by borrowing other people’s statements does not make your attempt at argument right, it only makes it a repetition.”
    I assumed you and your fellow travellers would be erudite and sufficienlt well read enought to recognise the words of Yoani Sanchez? All the abuse to the sentiments expressed in my borrowed words apply to her??

    January 28 2010 , Cuban blogger, writer, and photographer Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo interview with Sanchez:

    “For this reason I support an immediate opening to allow all Americans to travel to Cuba, the end of the “blockade,” the end of the damaging hostilities of the Cold War, and in particular the complete elimination of anything that limits contact between the citizens of both countries.”

    http://www.allvoices.com/contributed…d-obama-speaks

    Indeed in the words of Humbug : Obviously some ‘leftist prostitution supporting degenerate’??
    And Albie ….”a scatterbrained opinion”!

  5. Cuban “advisors” in Venezuela:
    They are “informally” in charge of DIEX, the Interior Ministry, the Central Bank the DIM & the DISP and involved in the educational system … does this say anything?

  6. lastly juancito …
    I hope you realize that by borrowing other people’s statements does not make your attempt at argument right, it only makes it a repetition.
    Since your are “borrowing” other people’s satements without mention of the context the validty of your own argument comes to question
    However you are at best a passable “spinner” of thought, not a seeker of truth.
    I’ll live you to your toys … have fun!

Comments are closed.