Over the last week, I received depressing news. 2 of my students in my 2015 form class had committed a serious offense. If they are adults, they will be jailed. Still, youth is not a good enough excuse. The school has caned them, and they will have to look for a new place to study.
The 2 students had no one to blame but themselves. The offense was probably committed in a moment of folly, without much thought to consequences. Sadly, I find such behavior common among the pampered youth. It was sad for me when I heard the news, because I had put in much effort into the 2015 class. I had hoped for better from these boys. The 2 students will have to change school, and I am not sure if their new environment will be as forgiving.
It is especially so for student D, for he has been given many chances despite having numerous discipline issues since joining the school. He was detained this year in Sec 2, and I thought that the extra year will offer him another year to mature and learn.
Student D is notorious in school, but I see in him so much potential for good. He is street smart, gets along well with peers, has good motor skills and is intelligent. He is like a seed, hardened by all the punishments received over the years. But beneath the hard shell, I see the potential of a great tree. But he needs the right soil to grow. The current school is nurturing; I am unsure of his next one. Where can he go now, with his dismal results, poor records and a serious discipline case.
Student J had lost his father last year to an accident. I visited him at the wake and he seemed shakened. He is the only son, but he has sisters. I told him that he is the only man in the family now and must be mature, and take care of his family. He promised me he will do so.
And initially, he seemed to be trying to be better. I sensed his efforts and he improved in his results sufficiently to be promoted to the next academic level. But all these now seemed to be in vain. A single serious mistake can, and did, undo all of his past deeds. I am disappointed that he could not keep his promise. I can only hope he will learn from this experience, and be better in his new school.
Here are screenshots I took from my class whatapps chat, of the parting advice I have given them. Some information has been removed, given its sensitivity.
The 2 boys have come to terms with their departure. Student D has this on his whatapps status: “maybe it’s for the best .🍃”. Student J has “It’s time for a new start of life🍃”. I also hope that they will have a new beginning in another new school.
The trials they are going through, are like shit. It stinks, but can also be a great fertilizer. I can only pray that one day, they will, like the great seed they are, see the light and fulfill their potential, sprouting to be a great tree that will provide shade for many others.
“人非聖賢 孰能無過 過而能改 善莫大焉”