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Tawjihi under examination

Aug 13,2018 - Last updated at Aug 13,2018

Last Friday, hundreds of thousands of Jordanian youth were glued to their computer screens to check their Tawjihi, Jordan’s school leaving exam, results. There were no surprises: 22 arrests for discharging firearms and 2,564 cases of obstructing traffic and driving with passengers leaning out of vehicles, all in celebration.

On the academic side, the top grades went once again to girls. The top scorers were eight girls out of 11 students in the scientific stream, and nine out of 12 in the literary stream.   

These results lead me to wonder: since girls consistently prove themselves to be the best, brightest and most focused, why does Jordan’s civil status law recognise their existence only as an appendage to a man? Women cannot have a family book, which is an essential identity document. They appear only as a page on the family book of a male relative, a dead one if needs be.

But back on academic considerations again, one remembers Plato’s observation that the direction in which education starts; a man will determine his future in life. A Jordanian philosopher counter-argued on the social media, concurrently with the announcement of Tawjihi results: “In Jordan, the sentence: ‘I was sent to you by His Excellency regarding a position…’ is a better qualification for employment than a master degree.”   

Which of the two philosophers is correct? We know that the top scorers in the scientific stream are channelled to study medicine; but what about those in the literary stream? And with all due respect to the medical profession, why not channel some bright students to become decision makers?

Perhaps we do. So as a quintessential optimist, I suggest that we disclose the number of top decision makers who were among the top ten in the Tawjihi. Stretch it a bit; top twenty, or even top thirty. Any? None? 

Moreover, would it be reasonable to imagine that Jordan’s economy, for instance, might be in a better state if some bright students had become decision makers?  

And while we are at it, what about children at the other end of the spectrum? Minister of Education Azmi Mahafzah acknowledged that there were four schools which did not produce a single successful student. Perverse as this may seem, it is a whopping success story because the figure was nine such schools in the winter exams last February, and in 2015, 78 schools failed to produce a single successful student. 

Seriously, the Ministry of Education should share with us how it contrived to achieve this resounding success so quickly, if only to reassure us that someone, somewhere in the impenetrable labyrinths of government, is doing something to make our lives better; or at least tries to do so.

Such an assurance is badly needed by Jordanian families who are now compelled to forego their Friday maglouba to put their children through school and university; and as they do so they wonder: “Will our children really gain anything from this?” The answer may be reassuring or alarming, but it needs to be known.

 

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Comments

Very powerful article

THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST ARTICLES THAT I HAVE READ IN JORDAN TIMES. IF FACT, MR ALI KASSAY HAS SAID A LOT IN THIS ARTICLE NAMELY AS FOLLOW;
1) THAT WOMEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN THE BEST STUDENTS IN THIS HIGH SCHOOL EXAM AND YET WE IGNORE AND THROW THEM OUT.
2) THAT THE FACT STILL REMAINS THAT THE SCORES OF THESE STUDENTS HAS NO CORRELATIONS WITH CIVIL PARTICIPATION.
3) THAT WASTA DETEMINES WHO GETS WHAT, WHEN AND HOW.
4) THAT WHEN WE CONTROLL FOR THE STATIFICATIONS OF WOMEN ELIMINATED AND BOXED UP, THE JORDANIAN ECONOMIC STATUS
WILL BE DIFFERENT.
5) THAT GIRLS EDUCATION IN JORDAN IS A WATE SINCE THE PROBABILITY OF PUTTING THEIR TALENTS TO WORK IS ZERO.
IN SUMMARY, IT IS TIME FOR SOUL SEARCHING IN JORDAN, TO LET THE SHARIA COURTS DETERMINES WHAT THESE GIRLS ARE WORTH OR TO LET THE MARKET ECONOMY DETERMINES WHO GETS WHAT, WHEN AND HOW. SHAME UNTO OUR MISGUIDED VALUES.

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