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Are the New Generation of Boholanos Dumb? (Part 2)
« on: July 05, 2007, 01:04:17 PM »
By JES TIROL
Columnist
The Bohol Chronicle

Part 2. The “dumbing” of the young generation

Proem

The dictionary defines “dumb” as having no power of speech; not inclined to speak; or uncommunicative.

What this writer would want to emphasize is that the present young generation has no language that they would use to analyze and communicate. This is because our educational system has made them so.

Languages learned

The young Boholano grow up with his mother language, the Sugboanon Bisaya. His mother language is not properly taught in school. When he enters school, he is taught in the foreign languages of Filipino and English. When the student is outside the classroom he uses his Sugboanon Bisaya. However it is already tainted and it becomes “Bisaylislog (Bisaya-English-Tagalog).” The situation will continue from Elementary to High School. Bear in mind that the Bisaylislog is not accepted in the educational system.

The Filipino language is not pure Tagalog. It is practically Pidgin English. In fact it is the largest Pidgin English in the world today. When it was yet known as “Pilipino” (with a P) it was yet based on Tagalog. Now that it becomes “Filipino” (with an F), it is based on English.

My question to Filipino language teachers is what grammar will govern in Filipino? Tagalog is an agglutinative language while English is an inflectional language, these languages have different grammars. The usual answer will be that it will be Tagalog grammar but actually if you analyze carefully the teachers actually don’t know what are the grammatical rules.

Economics as an example


In elementary and high school, the subject “Economics” is taught using the Filipino language. It is labeled in Filipino as “Ekonomiks.” The language used in the textbooks is the language presently used in television and tabloids. About 70% are English words with “filipinized” spelling. The grammar used is heavily in favor of the inflectional grammar and a sputtering of the agglutinative grammar.

I asked one teacher, how would you translate “pump-priming the economy?” She was stymied. She tried, “pagpapamp prayming ng ekonomiya.” This is just directly “filipinizing” the English words like a parrot would do. The meaning and the intellectual content are absent.

I reminded her that a pump has always been translated as “bomba.” To prime is similar to “pagpasimula” in Tagalog. So the translation should be “bomba na pagpasimula ng ekonomiya.” The trouble is, “bomba” has many meanings in Tagalog. It could mean pump, bomb, pornographic show, or harsh political speech. All of these meanings can be applied to the economy. Now, which meaning would the young reader give to the word “bomba?”

Now you can understand why the young generation has no mastered language that could be used in intellectualized discussions.

Uncoordinated DepEd, CHED, and PRC

The Department of Education (DepEd) is in charge of Elementary and High School. It insists in the use of bastardized English also known as Filipino. The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) is incharge of College and Graduate School. It insists of proper English.

When a High School graduate will enroll in Bachelor of Science in Economics, he will find out that the economic he learned in High School must be unlearned. The language and the stock knowledge he obtained in High School Economics are very different from what is required in college. This is one reason why the young generation is confused and has a tendency not to listen or to opt out of the situation.

Now comes the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC). It also insists on its own standards of what a professional should be. The PRC conducts examination using the proper English language. Even its Filipino is the traditional-purist Tagalog language. Would you still wonder why only very few will pass the Licensure Examinations?

Comment

Our educational system has succeeded in “dumbing” the young generation. Now comes a new Secretary of Education who wants to improve English, Science, and Mathematics performance in the educational system.

The results of many scientific researches in the Philippines and abroad have shown that you will not become proficient in English, Science, and Mathematics if you do not master the grammar of your mother language. However in our case, we teach English as the second language and Filipino as a third language but never teach the first language or mother language of the child.

In the country called Sri Langka, every child has an option to obtain his education up to the college degree level in the Sri Langkan language or English language. Bear in mind that their educational system is patterned after the excellent British educational system. I have encountered them in Graduate School at AIT, Bangkok, Thailand, and they are very good in mathematics.

If the same procedure is adopted in the Philippines, then we will have nurses, engineers, etc. of the same quality who would have no desire to go to other countries. If the Japanese, Thais, Indonesians, etc. can produce professionals using their own language, I am sure it can be done also in the Philippines. If only I will be allowed, I can teach the whole Civil Engineering degree using the Sugboanon Bisaya language. If you want proof, just ask my former students in the Sugboanon Bisaya language.

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How To Educate the Boholanos (Part 1)

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