school openning

Schools are second home.  Teachers are ancillary parents.  Classmates are brothers and sisters.  School exposure makes a person whole, total and absolute.  A person deprived of schooling therefore is disadvantaged and most likely to lose whatever it is there in the future for him.


There are a number of school drop outs who made it:  Apples’ Steve Jobs, Microsoft’s Bill Gates, US President Abraham Lincoln, former Labor Secretary Blas Ople, National Artist Nick Joaquin, Chess great Ben Rodriguez, among a long list.  They never graduated at all but the point is, they went to school sometime and it is there where their minds were opened.  Never mind if it was never closed at all.  The world benefited on their genius and was developed because of their persistence and creativity—qualities that only the institute could provide.  Such attributes could have been triggered and nurtured, even challenged and pushed them to pursue their craft during their stint in school.


Everyone should never be deprived of schooling.  Let them drop out.  Let them even leave school or abandon its premises for a cause and even without reason.  But every person must be able to dip himself and savor the atmosphere of the academe.  And then after the baptism, after tasting, after imbibing the scent of raw paint, of minted books, let him choose.  The immersion is worth the future of the person already.


I grew up in a family steep in the tradition of schoolwork.  My great grand parents, grandparents, parents were all educators.  I have a number of degrees tucked in my credentials.  I relished life in the academe, the library was my concept of what paradise is all about—-teeming with ideas, brimming with thoughts published and filed, and the world can be appreciated in one’s fingertips.  I never realized though that paradise can be compressed with what we have now as Google.  Whatever.  But the learning process, the research, the inquiry makes a person fresh, confident and resourceful.


In Philippine prison, in my capacity as worker, I, along with a number of colleagues who are oriented in the academe tried to influence penal servitude of inmates in favor of correctional education.  We believe that education should be the backbone of correctional rehabilitation—if not the entire field of corrections.  That education should define not only the merits of corrections but should serve as its beacon in the mandate for reformation.  Educational programs may not sit well in an atmosphere predicated with control and fear, vassalage and bondage, exploitation and pain, but it is worth the exposure.  Inmates who underwent the procedure, compelled as they were, never evolved into hostile beings much as they intend to be one.


Schools are landmarks seen as dear alma mater by people who made it.  It is also hoped that prisons should have the same imprint among those who passed through its portal.  This is possible when prisons become literally a school, where guards become teachers and wardens, the respective deans.


If this happens, humanity becomes a course, violence will be a foregone notion and the world eventually is prepared for Love.


About vjtesoro

A perpetual student of Corrections

Posted on June 10, 2013, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Correct ka dyan Chief…I particularly like what Victor Hugo said..” He who opens a school door , closes a prison” Regardless of whether an inmate finishes or not his studies, his very exposure to progressive ideas and varied perspectives infuses in him a world, not only tinge with hope but with a promise of a bright future. It opens in him a whole new experience , one which he has never known before. Often we hear inmate students say..” Mam, it is only now that we heard these things. We should have been given this opportunity before. Maybe if we have known this when we were younger, we would have not ended in prisons”.

    But things happen for a reason. An offender may have missed opportunities presented in him while he’s outside the prison walls, yet God in His love and mercy, gives him a second chance through prison education.As it is hoped by many, I for one trust that the knowledge and skills we impart to the prisoner will transform him genuinely and goad him to embrace a life of truth and goodness.


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