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Colors 48: schools

COLORS 48 goes back to school. We visit a special unit for teenage mothers in the UK—the country with the highest rate of adolescent pregnancies in Western Europe—one of the biggest public schools in Asia and an elite private school in the Malawian bush. Its founder—a late African dictator—decided to create a carbon copy of the famous British boarding school, Eton, in his home country. But he forgot to mention the mosquitoes to the imported English teaching staff.

At the Gan HaShalom kindergarten in Jaffa, Israel, teachers tell us that cultural barriers dissapear when Israeli and Palestine children are mixed together in a classroom. In India, a female military academy student moans about not being punished as much as her male counterparts, while in Iran, a young girl says that her greatest joy is to buy a new pair of shoes (shrouded head to toe in black chadors, footwear is the easiest way to make a fashion statement). Lack of choice is not a problem at St. Pauls, an elite school in New Hampshire, USA. Students have over 70 in-school sports at their disposal, including skeet shooting, skiing (nordic and cross country) and sailing.

We also did some homework of our own and discovered that 250 million children between the ages of five and 14 work instead of going to school—and they’ll probably go on to become illiterate adults (there are 875 million in the world, the same number as 10 years ago). Which is a good reason to find out exactly what kids today think of the way they are being educated.

COLORS 48: Schools—the place to learn what they’re learning.

 

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