Indiscipline is rapidly becoming the order of the day in our schools. We cannot deny that there are numerous factors fueling this anomaly, the future of this country is at stake if this is not checked. Inasmuch as we would agree that times have changed, and so has the mode of training children, one must consider the factors that are responsible for this growth in indiscipline. We must find lasting solution to it before it destroys our youths.
Colonel Eddy Vincent (rtd), who retired from military service in 1995 as Commandant of Command Secondary School Kaduna, attributed what he called the degenerating discipline in public schools to the overbearing influence of parents in the affairs of schools. He gave this observation in Abuja, during the 20th anniversary get-together of the Class of 1995 of the school, convened by Omolola Fasanya, an alumnus of the school.
His words: “There’s not much discipline in the system now. In those days, when I say today is not open day; no parents would come into the school to see their wards. “Nowadays, once you are a politician, a big man, the gate is thrown open. But in terms of personal discipline of my students, then they are very disciplined.
“And if you really understand that it is a military school, 90 percent of the students in that school, their parents are in the military, it is only about 10 percent that are civilians and so they carry this discipline from the barracks, officers and the rest of the school and so when you say I want absolute silence, in the split of seconds the whole place would be quiet and if a pin drops you would hear.
“I think we still have a lot to do as far as discipline is concerned. And I think this is as a result of the interference from our parents today, that is; this present generation.”
He commended the old students of the school for intervening in the development of the school, stressing that such partnership between schools and their old students is very essential.
Like they say, charity begins at home, the first contact any child has is with the parents and as such, a child should be disciplined from home, and this makes the work of the teachers easier and faster. When we say discipline, we do not categorically mean flogging. As a matter of fact, there are other disciplinary methods that are more effective on any erring child contrary to the “spare the rod and spoil the child” admonition.
The importance and the need to discipline our youths cannot be ignored or thrown to the backyard. This is the age they are most rebellious, and when we do not curb these excesses, we put our society at risk. I put it to you that no child is willing to be obedient and law abiding, except the child is guided and instructed to do the needful. A country that is not willing to train her youth is doomed for destruction in the nearest future.