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Respect for property

I was given the opportunity a couple of months ago to cover a story for a pageant which was held at one of our secondary schools and honestly I was totally shocked by the state of the toilet facilities. I honestly thought nothing of it until a couple of days ago I encountered yet another secondary school with deplorable toilet facilities.

My question is why are these toilet facilities in such terrible condition? Is it that these schools maintenance departments are not fixing the issues or is it that the children are destroying these toilets? Whoever is to blame something needs to be done. I am not a parent but if my child had to use some of the toilets that I have seen I would be very concerned. The toilet seats where broken, writings all over the wall, water on floor; it was just awful.

In writing this column I spoke to one of my friends who is a teacher and I was told that in most cases the children are to blame for the state of the toilets at many schools. I was informed that on many occasions, toilets are replaced and within a few days many of the toilets are broken. If this is the case, why would anyone want to deface or damage public property? I guess this is our culture because persons who commute everyday with public transportation can attest to the fact of sitting in seats that have either profanity or names of persons and where they come from.

I do hope that someone from the Ministry of Education reads this column and goes and visits a few secondary schools to see the state of their toilet facilities and see what measures can be put in place to keep them in proper working conditions.

Where did this culture come from of not respecting public or private property? Why should anyone take a pen or marker and write all sorts of profanities on public and private buses? I went to school and never did I think of putting my name or anything of that manner on the bus I would travel every day to and from school. Are we not aware that this is crime? I guess we don’t take it seriously because no one that I can remember was dragged in front of the law courts to answer to defacing public property.

Why would school children destroy the same toilets that eventually they will have to use? I have heard many teachers complain that they are experiencing many challenges with getting children to retain and focus on their school work. It seems to me that our children have truly lost their way.

Parents I implore you today to talk to you kids. Encourage them to be strong and independent individuals who do not succumb to peer pressure or who do not need to be in a group to define who they are. Have a wonderful and safe week ahead!!!

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