Archives For December 2017

It’s been a month since I left Peru.
The initial plan in Peru was to work while refining my Spanish and to stay there about 4 or 5 months. But from the very first day, the employee who had decided to hire me as a babysitter since 2 months ago didn’t appear in the meeting place. The fact is I had no plans except that babysitter job. So I had been staying at guest houses all time in Peru. As a result, I decided to study as I had previously written in my blog.
Tourism is more prosperous out there than I thought. That seemed to be entirely counting on the tourism industry. The center of Cuzco was full of foreign tourists every day. That many people would visit Machu Picchu. Even though foreigners were overflowing, I didn’t see any contact between local Peruvians and foreigners except for the purposes of business. Peru’s prices are considerably cheaper compared to the United States and Canada. In places for tourists, of course, pricing is for them, not for local people. Speaking of restaurants, it costs more than three times than local restaurant. There is a huge gap between pricing for foreigners and locals. First of all, local people will not enter such tourist shops. So the stores used by local people and the stores used by tourists are completely different. Local people desperately try to get some money from tourists such as inducing massage, souvenirs, anywhere in the central of Cusco.
Cusco is quite famous for antiquities, most of tourists will come for them. There are antiquities everywhere in the city, but everywhere It considerably costs high entrance fee. I was quite surprised when I heard the price of the most famous Machu Picchu. Together with entrance fee and transportation fee, It cost at least US$300 or more per person. Even for tourists, it’s not cheap amount. It would be a tremendous amount for local people. I was one of the poor backpackers and I wasn’t also interested in the ruins, moreover I did not feel like going to pay that price alone. So after all it was nearly two weeks in Cuzco, I have never been any antiquities even Machu Picchu.
It costed a lot staying there rather than I thought, I couldn’t find a job with my poor Spanish language skill which is beginner level, the atmosphere like specializing by tourism industry didn’t suit, more various things affected and after all I decided to leave Peru. Additionally, for the last few days, I got sick by the climate and elevation of Cusco and I was in the bed all the time.
Peru is completely different from any other countries I have been, and was very attractive. Maybe Peru has many ruins of such historical backgrounds Besides. There are many places to visit in Peru, next time I want to travel from top to bottom.
I also went to Cusco and had a wonderful encounter. That person was one of the early childhood educator same as me. She has her own educational theory and which is totally impressive. In truth, I wanted to volunteer at her daycare and wanted to learn about her educational theory, but after thinking variously, I decided to give up to do that this time. However, I’d like to visit Cusco again and learn about her educational theory next time.



As I mentioned before, I was teaching English at two schools: a public school and a private school in the city of Pital in Colombia.
First of all, speaking of the private school, a principle of school has all power inside of the school. Also in public schools, a principle of school has all power inside the school, even though public schools publicly consist under Department of Education. I am saying schools are not closely associated to Department of Education. (That is my word and it seemed be so on my observation.) In short, all the quality of education in the school depends on only one person who is a principle.
Here is a story of a public school that I actually saw. When I was there, the payment was delayed for all teachers in the public school where my host mother works (an English teacher at the public school). In addition, she has been working overtime for about 24 hours this year, but that overtime was not also transferred to her account. Those overtime pay must be paid monthly. So she talked to her principal, but the principal refused to pay. And when she talked to Department of Education, then they said they can not do anything about the issue of not paying overtime. They gave her another option which is to take days off for the hours of overtime, instead. She had no choices, and took days off.
The other thing was when I and she were having a class, I always saw some students are playing soccer or just having chat outside. I asked her, why they always do’t have a class?She said they have a class with another English class, but the another English teacher doesn’t do anything and just let them play. I was so shocked that is happening in public school. The another teacher is one of the principal’s favorite, so even if he goes home at any time, he will be allowed. Mother, of course, was against it, but the another teacher works longer than her and the principal’s favourite, so she could’t do anything. And sadly she wasn’t one of favourite, so the principle was always being so strict to her. Other teachers don’t care about the issue, no one wants to be the principle’s opponent. No one says anything. The students in that class seem to think that they are all lucky without classes all the time and be able to play all the time. It is so sad reality that their right to receive education are taken away by the teachers who are supposed to give education to children working under Department of Education. We finally got the opportunity to receive public education freely on lots of history and sacrifices, but the reality is sadly adults are taking away the right. To be honest and frankly, there are many such lazy teachers in public schools. They are on absolutely advantageous position as a civil servant, and they are unconsciously or selfishly depriving the right of education from children, everyday. Good-dam world.
One more thing that is in private school. I was so surprised that no one had textbook. Whether to bring an English dictionary further depends on the family because parents need to pay for it. So there were very few students bringing an own dictionary. Regarding textbooks  provided by private schools are distributed to each student, but as data. So the school ask each student to bring printed copies individually. Currently there were no students doing it. Printing isn’t cheap enough. Although textbooks are’t everything, but if there is no textbooks, the time loss is large, and it is difficult to penetrate knowledge equally to each students. Every time the teacher writes the content of the lesson on the whiteboard and the student take a note. That note is everything. The point is that if you do not bring or lose that note, there is nothing. I do not know if it is on purpose, but there are several students who do not bring notes in my class or they said they don’t have them. In short, there is no textbooks, no notes, no dictionary, no knowledge of English, they don’t have anything. The lessons under that situation was pretty tough than I imagined. Because it is almost impossible to let them think new words? It is not math or science. It’s language. They need guideline or at least basic knowledge. Otherwise how can I teach them something with my poor Spanish and under the circumstances that no one has guideline or some of them have no papers. This is not called teaching techniques. This is called a big challenge or severe issue of education. Other different subject as well, teacher’s mouth is all out there. But if you answerer to 10 questions for each student, 20 or 30 students, the lesson will be over. I could’t ask parents to buy an own dictionary. So there was always a conflict about that.
The substantive educational rights possessed by each teacher is enormously large. What students learn in compulsory education depends mostly on the teacher’s hands.

その他、僕の目に留まったのは、僕とマザーが授業をしている時にいつも同じクラスだけずっと授業がないのか外で遊んでいる。マザーに聞くと、あのクラスの英語教師は授業をしないとの事。そんな事が公立学校で許されるのか?と問うと、その教師は校長のお気に入りだから好きな時に家に帰っても、授業をしなくても許されるのだと。マザーは勿論それについて反対だが、その先生の方が職歴が長くベテランだからマザーみたいに新任の教師には何もできないのだと。他の先生たちもそんな人の事なんて気にしないか、校長に目をつけられたくなくて誰も何も言わない。そのクラスの生徒たちは、自分たちだけいつも授業が無くラッキーだと思っているらしい。たくさんの歴史と犠牲の上にようやく与えられた教育を受ける権利を、教師という立場の者がそれを生徒に与える機会を奪うなんて、何とも悲しい現実だ。公立の学校にはそんな怠け者の教師が何人もいるのだという。彼らは公務員という絶対的有利な立場で、今日も   子供達の教育を受ける権利を無意識のまま、自己勝手に剥奪しているのだろう。