Thursday, July 26, 2012

BELIZE EDUCATIONAL CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT UNDERGOES REVIEW WITH A STRANGE TWIST

A Senator in the Belize government parliament has brought up an old saw, in that he is complaining that our Belize educational system is producing only problem solving, administrative salaried type clerks, instead of the pioneer, economic development, self employed small manufacturing people we need to build our Belize economy.
  Apparently he has come to the conclusion ( we did 20 years ago and complained way back then ), that the classical British educational system, does teach problem solving skills,  but does not teach APPLIED PRACTICAL PROBLEM SOLVING START UP, LIGHT MANUFACTURING TYPE SOLUTIONS, for in our Belizean society there are no salaried jobs by big manufacturing firms to hire such people. Government salaried clerks are limited in scope for employment purposes.  The Senator is quoting 5000 graduates of higher education in Belize a year, with no salaried jobs in sight.  Yet academically they have the problem solving skills in paper pushing, but not practically, in applied light manufacturing.
  The CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT, AS PART OF THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, HAS TO COME UP with APPLIED MECHANICAL, LIGHT MANUFACTURING TEACHING, IN A "HANDS ON" BASIS, for the manufacture of things like solar panels for export to Guatemala, arthritus lotions for export over the internet, cheap cardboard telescope making, of which we are sitting on an order for 20,000 per month for the last three years and unable to find anybody in BELIZE, capable of manufacturing these on a kitchen table.  There are hundreds of such things to make here and export.
  Apparently, the problem solving education found in our high schools, colleges and University, do not include a HANDS ON APPLIED  light manufacturing segment and thus graduates of higher education in Belize are basically useless in a small country with limited salaried paper pushing clerical jobs. Graduates should be able to have the school experience in making things from scratch, from business plans, costing studies and projections, the actual scrounging around and finding suppliers and finding the problem solving solutions to making things for sale and export, within tight budget constraints.  For example, cardboard tubes can be bought abroad, for cardboard tube telescope making, but ready made cardboard tubes would probably be prohibitive in import transportation costs, so another problem would have to be solved in buying large rolls of flat cardboard material and then making a mandrel, to form your own tubes thus saving on customs duties and transportation costs, thus cutting your production costs.  Same story with the two lenses. Blank sheets of either glass or plastic can be imported, or bought locally and you make a rig to cut the circles and then find a way to make a jig to grind the necessary two telescope lenses.  None of this is hard stuff to do.  Or expensive; it just takes problem solving skills learned in higher education, turned to PRACTICAL APPLIED MECHANICS of doing things needed, at the lowest cost.
  This segment of problem solving so far, has not been tackled by the CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT DEPARTMENT of the Department of Education.  Without this sort of experience, in school, our problem solving clerical human production is limited in scope, to paper pushing clerks,  and are not educated to provide the SELF EMPLOYED ENTREPRENEUR our small nation needs, to provide exports and jobs for those not educated.

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