AHF derides child rights advocate over homeschooling comment

Disrespectful and downright ignorant!

That is how President of the African Heritage Foundation (AHF) Paul Simba Rock is describing recent statements by child rights advocate Faith Marshall-Harris questioning the effectiveness of homeschooling.

Delivering a position paper at the weekend on what should be contained in the laws of Barbados to ensure this country was fully compliant with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Marshall-Harris suggested that parents who chose to homeschool their children were depriving the young ones access to the best training and education, along with the necessary recreation, leisure and social programmes.

The former Juvenile Court magistrate also linked the process to child abuse, telling her audience it was necessary “for the State to employ extreme vigilance to leave no room for abuse and neglect masquerading as homeschooling.

“There are many fallacies abounding with regard to homeschooling . . . . I ask myself whether a child should be forced to accept a sub-standard level of education, and a lack of social interaction because his or her parents have decided to so deprive them,” she said.

This did not go down well with the AHF, which today derided the UNICEF Children’s Champion for Barbados.

“We the members of the African Heritage Foundation find [this to be] un-researched, uninformed, non-progressive, disrespectful and downright ignorant,” Rock said.

He charged that Marshall-Harris had insulted Barbadian parents who chose to homeschool their children, insisting that those who did were well aware of the value of education, and for the most part, wanted their children to be properly educated.

In addition, Rock said, the majority of parents who keep their children away from public schools did so because they had “serious issues of contention” with the school system.

“These contentions may come from religious discriminations at public schools that are Euro-Christian in their philosophies, uncontrolled environments that have led to a rise in bullying, school fights, sexual activities and disrespect for self and others, just to name a few,” Rock said.

During her presentation, Marshall-Harris had ridiculed the fine imposed on those found guilty under the Education Act of not sending their charges to school, arguing that the $50 charge was “derisory” and that it should be increased substantially.

In his statement today Rock questioned the wisdom of such a recommendation, contending that harsher punishment made little sense.

“How does this actually address the abovementioned concerns of the parents?” he asked.

Homeschooling was catapulted into the national spotlight in September after Rastafarian parents Charles Ijui Jah Lashley and Kim Isartes Ibre Jackman were found guilty of breaching Section 41 Clause (b) of the Education Act, Chapter 41 on the grounds that there was no record of their two children  — a boy and a girl both under the age of 12 — ever attending formal classes.

The two were later allowed to walk free when Magistrate Douglas Frederick dismissed the case after the prosecution attempted to add dates to the offences on the day the two were due to find out their fate, much to the consternation of the defence attorneys.

While she did not make specific mention of the case during her presentation,
Marshall-Harris had spoken of outcries by some people about a 12-year-old’s demonstrated ability to read, in an attempt to show that he was receiving the proper level of education at home.

“Is that the yardstick to be used?” she asked at the time.   

The AHF leader today used Marshall-Harris’ own words against her as he dismissed the statement as “unfounded”.

“Ms Marshall-Harris ignorantly states in her presentation . . . the outcries by some people [were] over the treatment of the family on viewing the video of the 12 year old son Ijuijah Sifahne, demonstrating his ability to read. [Her statements] were unfounded. Is that the yardstick to be used?” he asked.

Rock argued that the video was of the 12-year-old reading from the Barbados Constitution, a section that relates to religious freedoms in regards to education.

He said the Rastafarian parents had since “consented to having their children enrolled in the homeschooling service the AHF is building, which is being used as a supplement to the schooling the children are already receiving at home.

“As a result of this, the children are being given additional tutoring in Mathematics, English and Spanish,” the AHF president emphasized.

13 Responses to Insulting!

  1. BaJan boy December 9, 2016 at 12:45 am

    I don’t think Bajans have to look far to see who the real idiot is and who is really the disrespectful one. These black jackasses who have totally lost themselves to this classless culture seem to be ob the view that they have their own country. Sadly these children have no say because of their ages but the animals for parents really need to brought withing the cultural norms and allow their children exposure and some decency….

  2. Jennifer December 9, 2016 at 1:11 am

    @Mr Simba – well said sir. Many of our people are well assimilated into the European system and the need to fill the quota for the now global plantation. They are now happy to have to work harder than their rivals from other nations (race) to receive a lesser wage or to still own no wealth. These leaders have become pure house negros. E.g they teach your child things like xmas, Easter, valentines day, now halloween etc, not even researching the connection with these holidays to gods such as Ishtar, asteroth, chemosh, milcom etc which you should not be followinging according to the same bible they refuse to read. soon from now it will be gay marriage too. Only fulfilling the agenda of the elites. While the same people control the wealth in every country they colonize. The same home schooling system they are pulling down is being adopted on a vast scale by many Europeans such as USA, Sweden, UK etc. Since we love to follow so much like sheep why not follow on this one too. Such comments by this female is showing a serious lack of research and is truly non progressive. Sir I would say we are truly in the belly of the beast. They created a problem and then gave you the solution to fix it.

  3. Jennifer December 9, 2016 at 1:22 am

    Before commenting on this topic – look up the house negro and the field negro on u tube and see which category you fit into and be honest about it.

  4. Sabrina Brathwaite
    Sabrina Brathwaite December 9, 2016 at 2:04 am

    Yes very insulting!

  5. seagul December 9, 2016 at 5:03 am

    Massa white bajan boy –the animals of these children are the first humans discovered 400 000 in East Africa…the cradle of civilization.

  6. Brandon St.Rose
    Brandon St.Rose December 9, 2016 at 5:26 am

    He’s correct.. She has been blinded by self arrogance.

  7. Jennifer December 9, 2016 at 6:46 am

    @seagul – well said. This is what the lack of the right education is actually breeding. And the sad part is that the same education system in barbados is not teaching this history. Our children is made to feel like underachievers in school while their other race counterparts come out and get to be managers over them in their parents hotels, gas stations, plantations, restaurants, major stores, car companies, etc. The black adults who get away from massa try to get government jobs and continue to treat their black brothers and sisters like second class citizens. look at it and you will see. Our people seriously need the correct type of education.

  8. Jennifer December 9, 2016 at 6:59 am

    @bajan boy – this will have to be a classless culture as this is what happens when a people has been destroyed for centuries. When black women/men can be wearing blonde hair what does that say. Blondes are suppose to be dumbbbbbbbb. You got to be red (no one white) or a bad house negro. ALL colors and civilizations came from the black race, like it or not and I will leave it at that.

  9. Mansa Musa December 9, 2016 at 7:58 am

    @Jennifer, black people can have natural blonde hair. The Melanesian population of the solomon islands is an example

  10. Sheron Inniss December 9, 2016 at 10:11 am

    When will our people recognize that some of these organizations just are not about us. Will we ever recover from this indoctrination? The black race is the root of all civilizations. Our education system needs overhauling. Almost every invention that has made the world what it is today came from a black man. I wish to live to see the day when blacks will revert to their true heritage. We were never savages as some would have us believe. Or should I say we were no more savage than the other races.

  11. Jennifer December 9, 2016 at 1:44 pm

    This education system is designed to keep blacks at the bottom and in servitude. Push up some blacks to a position, and give them some clothes and dress European and then use that lot to keep the others at bay. You want to see discrimination in Bim – put on some African clothing and go for a job interview with your hair with an African headdress. I guarantee you will not get a job. Remember we are educated people now.

  12. Sue Donym December 9, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    There is no denying that the publicly offered educational content is more diverse and more in depth than the average home schooling experience would allow. The home schooling situation has the advantage of lower tutor:pupil ratios, reduces instances of tardiness due to travel and eliminates the need to adjust to new teachers and colleagues. The home taught student is exposed to the methods, values and ethics chosen by the the parent/tutor.

    What’s really insulting is the commenters telling people what they should think. It is one thing to acknowledge racial differences; it is quite another to try to make people believe that disdain for other races is the solution to uplifting yours.

    People’s ways of thinking and the reasons for them are as diverse as the people themselves. Not all people of any race are the same – neither in their good ways nor their bad – so that it is as meaningful to assume that everything Afrocentric is good as it is to suggest that all things Eurocentric are bad.

    Lest we mislead, there are some very dark skinned people who naturally have blond hair and to assume that anyone of dark complexion who experiments with or enjoys their look with blond hair is inferior is way off mark. Have a look at these two short clips.

    I believe that the open-minded will seek out the beneficial from any race, culture or locale as much as they will reject attempts to silence or discredit anything simply because it is perceived as foreign or unusual. People have many opportunities to question, correct and even to put forward their own reasoning. We’re not all mindless automatons, thank you.

  13. Damien Bradshaw December 10, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    “Unlike many countries, Finland has short school days and fills the rest of the day with school-sponsored educational activities. They believe that there is a good portion of learning to be done outside the classroom. The schools in Finland build the community and help to create identity among the citizens.”

    It’s funny how this European country is in the top educational systems of the world and their approach to teaching children is so unlike the Western side. I wonder how the comparison to Europeans makes this relevant. When Caribbean people talk about Euro-culture it seems they are speaking about the early slavery days as if the culture is the same now.

    It doesn’t change that the educational system in Barbados has a high level of ridiculousness but at the same time, it’s good to look at the countries that are thriving and their kids. The top spots for educational systems are all taken by Asian countries. Canada made it into number 10 being the only country from the Western side to be in there while the other 9 are all European/Eastern countries.

    Education seems very subjective now.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *