Fresh call issued to students to protest tuition payments
A public school teacher has suggested that students at every level of the education system walk out of the classroom come September and protest Government’s decision to stop paying tuition fees for students at the University of the West Indies (UWI).
Reverend Charles Morris, a long-time educator at the Combermere School, is vehemently opposed to the move which has seen UWI students having to foot the tuition portion of their university education bill for the first time.
The outspoken cleric warned that the decision would lead to chaos and destroy the island’s social fabric.
“You are creating a society where you are going to have uneducated, hopeless people, because that is your biggest problem when you have no hope. Right now this system is putting people in a lot of despair and you are creating a situation where poor, black Barbadians will not be able to move up the social ladder,” he cautioned in an interview with Barbados TODAY.
As he made yet another controversial call, Morris argued that the dismantling of free education must be a matter of concern for students at all levels since their future is now under threat.
The Anglican cleric also suggested that the move would result in an increase in crime since more people would be uneducated.
What’s more, Morris predicted, more children would abandon school.
“You are going to have more dropouts at secondary school too. A number of people will realise that when they come to school their parents can’t afford university so they will say ‘I just going through school, what is the sense of remaining in school to get a certificate to go and cut grass when I can stop now and go and cut grass?’ We are educating our people to be dunce by this policy.”
Insisting that the late Sir Grantley Adams and not Errol Barrow was the mastermind behind free education, Morris said that move propelled the island and its people to development.
“This freeness allowed working class persons to be able to be doctors, to be lawyers, to be teachers, to be accountants, to be in all the major professions. So what Grantley Adams rightly did was to invest in the greatest resource Barbados has and education was also used as an economic entity. You were not just educated for Barbados, you were educated for the world and we benefited economically because some of these people who studied abroad were able to remit to Barbados.”