the future of ethiopia
As Whitney once said, "children are our future / teach them well and let them lead the way". If the older kids at the private school where I teach are any indication of the future - be afraid, be very afraid. And when I say 'older kids' I mean those older than my kindergarten class. My interactions with other students includes a grade one class for 6 forty minute periods per week. These kids are frighteningly disrespectful and careless. They are absolutely clueless about what rules mean and are unafraid of any punishments that may come their way. (I gave out one hundred lines to a student that is consistently problematic and she hardly blinked an eye.)
There are most likely a lot of contributing factors here - a disorganized school which has several different teachers for one class meaning a lot of different rules and tolerance levels from teachers. Another factor could be inconsistency at home - these are spoiled kids, no doubt about it. (I overheard a conversation some teenage students had asking each other how many cars their family owned, what kind of cars, etc.) Rich kids often have parents who work long hours. For these parents, it's easier to buy their kids things rather than spend time with them. When they doll out punishments, they don't understand their children and/or the context so perhaps the punishment is overally harsh. (The director of the school mentioned to me that giving out lines can be viewed by the students as 'easy' compared to getting beaten at home.)
I'm generalizing of course. When I think about teenagers (shiver), I realize all those hormones create appalling behaviours that will disappear once the surge of hormones fades. So there's hope these kids will develop into relatively normal, productive, functioning people. But if they lack notions of consequence and respect at key stages of development like my grade one class, what will that create at age 13, 18, 25, etc.? These are privileged children who will go on to inherit this country but I'm afraid of what they will do with it.