Turning our back on science
SECONDARY teachers' concerns about the deteriorating state of science education are well placed, but there may be ways to address the problem other than those they suggest. An ASTI survey has found that one in seven schools has dropped a science subject this year, and another one in five will be forced to do so before the end of the academic year.
They blame cutbacks in government spending, citing difficulties in conducting field trips and a lack of information technology facilities in schools. Physics and chemistry, the subjects being most commonly dropped by schools, can be taught very effectively without the benefit of field trips, but a lack of basic IT tools is unforgivable -- the country only went broke recently.
On the other hand, a call for the hiring of laboratory technicians to clean up sounds a little optimistic at a time when everyone lucky enough to have a job should be prepared to roll up their sleeves.