MOE/UNICEF launch positive discipline videos  …don’t Use the Cane enforced through children music

Our children advocating for discipline sets the tone for a better society…Don’t use the cane is more than just music but a teaching tool and motivator for all stakeholders. Such were among the uttering of Hon. Nicolette Henry, Minister of Education as the Government of Guyana and UNICEF hosted the world premiere of videos about ‘A story of positive discipline’ and ‘Don’t use the cane’ at the National Cultural Centre.

Coping with student discipline in the classroom is a concern to all administrators of education and the Ministry of Education recognises this integral part of the UNICEF Convention on the rights if the child international treaty which recognises the human rights of children.

In this regard Minister Henry iterated at the videos launching that every school in Guyana is serious about nurturing children in safe, protective and friendly learning environments where each child has the right to be disciplined in a manner that respects their dignity. Further the minister noted that “outdated forms of discipline and corporal punishment has no place in our Schools moving forward. It is essential to recognise and address the challenges teachers face daily and give them the support needed to change the cultural modus-operandi of discipline in schools,” Minister Henry stated.

Ultimately the Ministry of Education’s goal is to reverse the trend and together with all partners find and implement the right strategies that will encourage the nation’s children to be excited about school and to participate positively, think analytically hopefully to make sound decisions and build their self-esteem.
After a year of activism through National debates, jungles and poster competitions our children advocates for positive discipline set the tone for systemic programming in positive discipline nationally. They have also been able to use music, art, research and persuasive presentations catering for multiple demographics and levels of intelligence.

Ms.Sylvie Fouet, representative of UNICEF Guyana/ Suriname and Minister Henry agreed that through a Bottom up approach to positive disciple in schools the videos will actively engage teachers, parents and students for Public sensitization among the many strategies.
In 2016 a one year multi strategy Child advocacy for positive discipline campaign in Primary schools was launched through the use of various forums moving beyond the class room setting to music and video production with help of key stake holders such as Vision sounds. The results are to be seen via dissemination moving forward to encourage buy in and ownership of the programme. The hope is that the efforts thus far can serve as a motivator for everyone to want to be involved in what shows a great promise for the children and the education system in Guyana.

In Guyana 69.r percent of children ages 1-14 experience violent discipline and some of this violence occur in in school where bullying, aggression and other violent behaviour seem to increase… where corporal punishment is accepted which often lead to some school aged children drop out of schools. Ms Fouet posited that a child friendly environment, respectful relationships among children, teachers, and parents will bring about positive learning and increase results for children.

“She admonished that “if we are to change the situation for children, we must do so with children and as such the partnership with the Minister of Education and team in nurturing an approach that promotes respectful, caring interactions among children, parents and teachers resulted in a joint effort to promote “positive Discipline’ in a model which focuses on positive points of behaviour. The production of the videos resulted from more than a year of working together with children to stimulate their creative nature to research and promote the benefits of Positive discipline.
“… There are 209 teachers who are already using positive Discipline and engaging parents-children in 180 classrooms from grades 1-6. The results yielded are the establishment of PD committees including members from the community, “said Ms Fouet.


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