Case of drum, tambourine

8 November 2017

Our colleague and academician Shamlan Al-Issa during a television interview spoke about a funny story related to the output in Kuwaiti schools. He said during a lecture, he asked a female student about her opinion on an easy topic and she apologized because she hadn’t studied. So he jokingly called her a small drum and told her to sit down. Professor Al-Shamlan asked another student the same question and her answer was more foolish than the first. Then he asked a third, who also did not answer and when he called her a tambourine, the statement reduced her to tears and she left the lecture hall angrily. The next day he met the assistant dean and the latter told him that one of his students had come to his office to complain about him for calling a student drum and calling her tambourine. During a television interview with former MP and Minister of Education (2011) Ahmad Al-Mulaifi, he said: “ I do not trust the World Bank and I say frankly that it is a wing of colonialism, a wing of destruction of culture in any society it enters, a wing of control and domination over the countries. If we believe in the words of the minister that the World Bank (WB) destroys education and it is a wing if imperialism, we shall find that the actual history of the WB of developing or ‘destroying’ education in Kuwait dates back to just two years when it applied a program that would take five years to complete. This program aims at development of the curricula, training teachers and increasing their ef- ficiency and it has succeeded in doing a lot. The destruction of the level of education in Kuwait occurred two years ago or in the 1980s when the power handed over voluntarily with love, all joints of education to the Brotherhood? As a result the group damaged the curricula and embraced backwardness and the rival party did the same in the process of demolition and underdevelopment? How can we put the blame on the World Bank since we are fully aware that our education system began deteriorating more than 30 years ago? If we know that a majority members of the Teachers’ Association are politicized and belong to religious parties, why did they not protest and describe the World Bank as a destroyer of education system and labeled it ‘wing of colonialism’? Our successive governments have handed over this vital and dangerous institution to the religious parties. We have seen the sad outcome of that unfortunate decision. Now it is time to correct the course and certainly the situation will not be any worse than it is now. Some of the spiteful and ignorant people claim that the ministers of education throughout this period were ‘liberals’, and we say: “They were all powerless on the issue of curriculum, even the most ‘liberal’ did not hesitate to approve the bad law about gender segregation, which further helped deteriorate education, loss of state money in billions without evidence that the decision contributed to raising the level of the morals of students. The Minister of Education, Mr Mohammad Al-Faris frequently makes visits outside Kuwait and talks about the achievements of the Ministry in the development of the educational process. I tell the minister to shed light on the local situation and the achievements of his ministry and tell the people to what level the education in Kuwait has reached and how the shortcomings are addressed. We ask the minister to continue the process that began with the former ministry with Bader Al-Issa at the helm and continue the same with the same momentum.