I WRITE in response to “Parents have to be totally involved (The Star, Feb 22).
As a parent of three schooling children, I disagree with the over-protective approach of the writer.
Everybody sends their children to school because we believe that is the best place for them to acquire knowledge and for character building.
Although they are not saints, we trust the teachers because they are trained and the profession is subjected to high moral expectations.
In ancient Chinese society, teachers and the knowledgeable were held in high regard.
As such, they should be respected as professionals who impart knowledge and shape your children’s character, without our stringent scrutiny.
All the schools are under the Education Ministry, with a minister answerable to Parliament.
The school compound is not closed to parents, and the staff are multi-disciplined. It is difficult to hide any wrongdoing.
Of course, we cannot leave education totally to the school. Parents should play a supportive role and guide their children.
Because of the high student-teacher ratio, sometimes it is not possible for the teacher to pay extra attention on weaker students.
Parents who find their children lagging behind should try to understand the problem and bring it to the attention of the teacher.
Most parents may think that they know their children best. However, there are many children who appear to be angels in front of their parents, but behave like devils in school.
I am not an advocate of physical punishment, but I think caning of non-vital parts is acceptable.
The punishment makes children aware there are consequences to being lazy or naughty.
There are many non-Chinese enrolled in SRJKC these days despite the abundance of homework and strict discipline. They do not mind what the Chinese parents fear today, for the sake of a better education.
Thirty years ago, not a child in his right mind would have dared to tell their parents that he or she was punished in school.
Because this was a shame and nobody would believe that you were not at fault.
Any complaint would likely result in a second dose of punishment from the parents.
The parents might even bring them to see the teacher in school, not to confront, but to ask their child to apologise to the teacher.
I was caned on the palm numerous times when I was in school (I could not spell, did not finish my homework, was unable to read out without referring to book etc).
The teacher gave me the liberty of choosing a thick or thin cane, but she warned the 10 strokes would be continuous without interruption.
I felt ashamed in front of my friends, and subsequently worked hard to avoid being caned again.
But I still enjoyed going to school because I had lots of friends. My confidence was not broken and I reminded myself to work harder.
I treated the same teacher at my clinic for arthritis and I chose the smallest needle for the injection to avoid pain.
It was her punishment that made me who I am today.
GENERATION Y PARENT, Shah Alam
Source: The STAR Home News Opinion Thursday, February 23, 2012