Which student is guilty?

Which student is guilty?

I am teaching in a migrant school, teaching students from the Karen ethnic group from Eastern Myanmar and with refugees around Mae Sot. The area I'm interested in is the difference in attitude towards the two people involved in copying person to person as opposed from the internet. The Karen people characteristically see no fault in the person whose work is being copied. They see it as a normal social act of helping others who might be in difficulties.

One incident at this school a few years ago illustrates this. An English born teacher identified a copying situation and called out both parties in front of the class, which was outdoors. The other classmates accepted that the one who had copied was at fault but balked at the idea of punishment for the one whose work had been copied. As punishment the teacher told both parties to run around the football pitch. What followed was that all the class students ran around the pitch as a gesture of solidarity with the one whose work was copied. I am curious if you have seen this phenomenon with other ethnic groups?

It makes me question our Western attitude to the one whose work has been copied. We tend to view them as part of a conspiracy to defraud the school or grading system. Increasingly I am seeing this as a self-serving attitude perpetuated by the school because it helps the school administration, Does the student have a greater duty of care to the school or to their classmate? I think you could certainly argue in favour of the latter, especially as one is a real person and the other an institution.

Loyalty to the institution is a learned behaviour taught mainly by the institution itself and arguably for its own rather than any community benefit. The person copied from is frequently a high academic performer and has little to gain academically from the practice; maybe a small amount of social kudos but not a lot. I don't have a clear cut resolution for theses questions but what is becoming increasingly clear is that it's not just a black and white, open and shut case.

Deewise


Read more letters

Send your letter to Ajarn.com



Featured Jobs

Native English Teachers

฿50,000+ / month

Bangkok


Multiple Teaching Positions

฿35,000+ / month

Bangkok


English Conversation Teachers

฿35,000+ / month

Thailand


Part-time Teachers for Weekends

฿330+ / hour

Bangkok


Native English-Speaking Nursery Teacher

฿60,000+ / month

Bangkok


Native English-Speaking Kindergarten Teacher

฿60,000+ / month

Bangkok


Featured Teachers

  • Mark


    British, 49 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Guillermo


    Filipino, 45 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Jonel


    Filipino, 35 years old. Currently living in Singapore

  • Tom


    British, 57 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Hannahlyn


    Filipino, 24 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Robert


    American, 49 years old. Currently living in China

The Hot Spot


Teacher mistakes

Teacher mistakes

What are the most common mistakes that teachers make when they are about to embark on a teaching career in Thailand? We've got them all covered.


Will I find work in Thailand?

Will I find work in Thailand?

It's one of the most common questions we get e-mailed to us. So find out exactly where you stand.


The cost of living

The cost of living

How much money does a teacher need to earn in order to survive in Thailand? We analyze the facts.


Need Thailand insurance?

Need Thailand insurance?

Have a question about health or travel insurance in Thailand? Ricky Batten from Pacific Prime is Ajarn's resident expert.


Contributions welcome

Contributions welcome

If you like visiting ajarn.com and reading the content, why not get involved yourself and keep us up to date?


Air your views

Air your views

Got something to say on the topic of teaching, working or living in Thailand? The Ajarn Postbox is the place. Send us your letters!


The Region Guides

The Region Guides

Fancy working in Thailand but not in Bangkok? Our region guides are written by teachers who actually live and work in the provinces.


The dreaded demo

The dreaded demo

Many schools ask for demo lessons before they hire. What should you the teacher be aware of?