I have an idea that someone has already had: a “pill” to prevent children leaving school. Let’s start with a look at the wonderful campaign shown in this magnificent video.
After you have viewed the video, I’d like to propose the following:
(i) First, replace the term “neglected diseases” for “school dropouts” (four out of 10 children in our countries do not complete secondary school) and the side effects that go along with it: increased likelihood of unemployment, drug use, teenage pregnancy, and criminal activities.
(ii) Second, consider how simple the cure is: merely getting children to stay in school and learn.
(iii) Third―and this is more challenging―that dropping out of school is “the pain of others,” since school dropouts come from the poorest families.
Our ultimate aim is to understand that “those other children” who drop out of school―those children who are not our own―is important to privileged people such as ourselves, for whom the importance of education is a given. And we must understand that we can do something about the problem. What we need is a “pill to cure school dropouts.”
Surely you are asking yourselves, “What kind of pill would this be?” For me, the secret is raising the status of the teachers. What if we invent a “pill” that rewards the best teachers? Buying such a pill would send a message of recognition and appreciation. It could be sold in supermarkets, pharmacies, and schools. What would this do for us?
In short, it would attract more good teachers who could do this:
The images speak for themselves. What do you think about these “pills to cure school dropouts?”
Addendum: Because of the action she took, Martha Rivera was honored by the governor of Mexico’s state of Nuevo León and today is a teacher recognized internationally for the courage she showed in protecting her students.