Time to find real solutions to these problems

06 May 2016

Dear Editor,

Re: Fighting schools reconcile 

If the principals of these schools can’t figure out how to control their students then they should all be fired and someone who can effectively deal with the students should be hired. 

Of course they would then have to be paid an adequate salary for their expertise. 

Also another suggestion could be to place a police liaison officer stationed at every high school immediately so that students and teachers have a person to go and report to if they are under threat or if they hear of any upcoming shenanigans. Just the presence of this person in uniform at each school can bring about the feeling of safety for the innocent and a sense of fear of being reported on for the not so innocent. 

The liaison officer should be seen as a trusted person by the students who they can easily go talk to, not necessarily an authority figure. 

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Choosing the right officer is key, maybe a woman officer or a young male officer who has not been out of high school very long himself. Someone the kids feel they can trust. 

I'm sure there are many students who are afraid of what is going on in their school and would be a great help, and feel comfortable anonymously helping a liaison officer to be informed before anything serious happens. 

I really believe the majority of the students want a peaceful place to study, and to be safe, and would help to make this a reality if they had a peacekeeping presence to confide in and immediate and easy access to this person. 

The trouble makers would be shut down in their tracks. Contrary to what it looks like right now my guess is there are more good kids at these schools than rotten apples and shutting down schools will only hurt the good students and not do much to address the real issues in Samoa; lack of education and literacy, job skills, and youth unemployment. 

Closing schools is the wrong direction. The good students need support to weed out the troublemakers. You will never convince me that female students would not do something to insure their safety from the threat of being stabbed or beaten if they had help and safe, confidential, options to insure their own safety. 

Instead of approving the funds in cabinet meetings for new 100,000 trucks and SUVs for Associate Ministers and Ministers, these funds can be used to pay the salaries of these 4 or 5 liaison officers. 

Better yet just get rid of the redundancy of Associate Ministers all together and use the savings from their salaries for these liaison officers. I think this would be money better spent. If a minister can’t do the job required of their portfolio on their own then a more competent minister should be appointed that can.

 

Ueni



06 May 2016

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