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Jun 23, 2011

The future of young men in the education system

Patrick Faber

Among the top twenty-five students, there were only nine males; they represent a mere thirty-two percent of country’s brightest. And with seventeen percent of primary school aged students not in the classroom and another fifty percent not in high schools, there is cause for concern. At Wednesday’s P.S.E award ceremony, we also asked the Minister what this poor performance and attendance means for the future of the young men in the education system.

Patrick Faber, Minister of Education and Youth

“In terms of male participation, the first part of your question, indeed it continues to be a struggle. We are now looking at the education system and how we could make it more appealing to young men. Indeed there are more females completing primary school, secondary. I was at UB’s graduation on Saturday and indeed the numbers far outnumber the number of males. But if we’re working on numbers in general, getting them to attend school and access education I believe the numbers for males will eventually go up. But that is not to say that we’re not working on trying to look at the problem specifically as it relates to the young men. Because indeed something must be going wrong with our current system that so many of them are falling out.”

Of note is that overall, the Corozal district scored best in the PSE, followed by the Orange Walk, Cayo and Belize districts. The top scorer Aliyah Marin hails from the Holy Redeemer School in Belize City.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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10 Responses for “The future of young men in the education system”

  1. mike g says:

    The minister of education fails to understand that the problem with young men out of school starts with the social and economic circumstances that they live in, unless something is done about the need for these young men having to go out and hustle at an early age there school attendance will get worse before it gets better.

  2. Policarpio Soberanis says:

    I tried contacting the ministry of education to facilitate an exchange program with the University of Iowa and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources as a means of sparking interest in the school system through environmental engineering. I spent over a month trying to reach someone but had no success. It is a shame that we have so many students and educators from Belize here in the USA that are trying to make a difference through programs like the one I referred to above that go unnoticed. There are solutions that can be stated in simple terms to solve the problem of male involvement. Implementation of these solutions is the difficult task that needs to be undertaken by the teachers and the parents. If a dialogue can be facilitated by News 5 with the Minister of Education, please feel free to contact me so that I can help.

    Policarpio A. Soberanis, PhD

  3. Sustainable solutions, please says:

    Every year, hundreds of students graduate from our local University, and there are no jobs available to them.
    We need university programs in our local curriculum that produce more self employers rather than a lot of job seekers!
    And GOB, you need to support more small business rather than squeez them out for the bigger, richer businesses!

  4. DT says:

    There is a simple part-solution to this:

    Make educational level up to Secondary level compulsory, and wholly funded by the government – OUR Taxes!

    Have a stronger Truancy department, and ful poers of prosecution of parents who refuse to send their kids to school. If schooling is free, there would be very little excuse for not attending!

    If every, especially the lower paid & unemployed parents & guardians don’t have to pay school fees, they’ll gladly make sure their children go to school, every school day.

    If there are no school fees, and properly funded feeding programs (or subsidies to keep meal costs down), the only thing parents & guardians would need to worry about would be uniforms, exercise books pens, pencils etc. which are affordable.

    Imagine a single bread winner in a household has say, 3 kids in school, one of those in high school, and earning less than $200.00 a week (under $10,400) – (Forget the Minimum Wage, it’s never enforced, so often abused by employers).

    That’s an annual bill of around $15-1800, just for fees, books, uniforms, report card, exams etc. (Students have to pay for their exams.. what kind of bull**** is that?). That leaves around $8700.00 a year for rent, food, light, water, and basic living costs. Not much is it? No wonder so many either turn to crime, or have their boys drop out of school to either become criminals or labourers!!!!

  5. student says:

    education is the only way out of this blackhole that our country is in. Singapore was a third world country 40 years ago, now it is one of the more industrialized nations in the world, thru education . they have some children studying and a library on their currency notes, not the Queens head, just to give you an idea of how important education is to their society.

  6. Earl Grey says:


    WE have out-grown our manufacturing base since CHINA NOW MAKES EVERYTHING.



  7. rod says:

    this pm and this gov. is the problem they have put all their friends in positions where they do not qualify for the jobs look at the whole picture every aspect of life in the toilet this is the worse education minister from the pm down worse gov. in the history of belize and the people who support and keep supporting this gov. are helping this beautiful country go down the drain wake up belizeans just look at every espect of your life is any of it better under this gov. if you say yes then you must be living in a wa cave tha shibay we need to get rid of this pm and this gov. . and i am not talking to all the wannabe belizeans living in the states eighter.

  8. Me says:

    I totally agree with Rod, this people we called to administer our business (Belize) are rotten from the inside. They are pushing monies in their pockets and not doing their jobs. Take for instance Pablo Marin. Did you know he fired a nurse student for no reason. well 1) he believe the nurse is PUP and 2) becouse he heard his one daugther’s nanis (two of them) say the nurse does not like the present gov. This is democracy. pablito you have no right to do that. the sad thing is that the nurse was not even talking about this Gov but about the worldwide news, that Govs have civil unrests.Shame shame shame on incompetence. Shame on our gov.

  9. student says:

    we don’t speak english we speak creole, remembah.. the call centers are searching for countries with people who speak proper english. there is no way in hell we can compete with India. India is an emerging market, they have in place policies to make their country and people competitive, we on the other had are stuck in a time zone and sometimes go backwards like in educating our people,

  10. ann says:

    The Male Crisis will not be handled by changes in curriculum, more one-on-one, or incentives. The problem is a social treatment problem that begins as early as nine months of age. The belief Males should be strong allows more aggression, more abrupt commanding words, and much less kind, stable, mental/emotional/verbal support and interaction. This treatment increases in severity as they grow. This is leaving Males maturing more slowly; more active for stress relief; not as attentive (higher average stress impedes learning motivation); and higher muscle tension that hurts handwriting. While the problem affects all Males, the lower the socioeconomic bracket and time in that bracket creates more aggressive styles with fewer supports. This creates an illusion of a Black Male Crisis but is really a general Male Crisis affecting all Males due to different environments. Complete Theory will go to all.

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