It is customary that the last two weeks of January are days of confusion, discussion and blame-sharing as a result of the outcome of the Namibia Senior Secondary School Certificate (NSSSC).
But soon the dust will settle and everyone will forget about the problem Namibia has of poor education – until next year January when the results of the 2020 academic year will come out. And then everyone will be at it again for only two weeks.
It is such a sad situation really, because the schools which do so poorly are the schools in communities that are poor. So that these communities don’t stand a chance of ever moving out of the cycle of poverty and hopelessness. But nobody seems to know where the solution is.
There are many factors or issues which affect the educational process in Namibia, such as lack of discipline, lack of ambition on the side of children, and lack of commitment from the authorities. But the most significant thing which can turn the tide from failure to success is reading.
How can you expect children to do better academically in a society that does not have a culture of reading? More than 90 percent of the children go through school unhappy because it is a process of torturing them.
Since the children come from homes and a society that does not have a reading culture, it becomes difficult for them to study and to learn and pass examinations.
The best teaching tool so far invented by humanity is the skill of reading. But our children cannot read although they are literate. When they study by reading their books it is like they are torturing themselves; they don’t enjoy the process. For them reading is something you do just to pass a test or exams.
It is a reading culture which will put the fun in learning. Without a reading culture (reading for fun, for enjoyment and for leisure) our children will continue to under-perform. We are simply reaping the fruits of our culture.
A reading culture is the opposite of a drinking culture. Parents must read if they want their children to read. Reading must start at home.
Surely if drinking were a tool useful for learning then our society would have come out tops.