In Lebanon students from at a young age are forced to wake up early to attend school at 7:30 am, study 7 hours at school, only to come back home with lots of homework assignments keeping them up till late at night. Unfortunately, this style of education is highly unproductive to our children's health, and their ability to enjoy learning. No education is possible unless children enjoy what they are doing. These children barely have the opportunity to engage with family members because of the pressure from their assignments. Many other students are suffering from seeing the pain of their parents working day night to pay off their tuition fees. Especially nowadays, most schools in Lebanon want payments in US dollars in the middle of this economic crisis.
Families are removing their kids from schools because the tuition is incredibly high and some are immigrating to receive free education and get the help they need. A great example is myself and my little brother: we moved back to America where my parents believe the education system will be very supportive for our learning ability.Leaving our loved ones and our beloved country behind was one of the hardest experiences we have faced as a family. I would have enrolled in the Lebanese University, which has always been a dream for me in order to stay in Lebanon, but I did not take the Lebanese Baccalaureate exam because I was in an American curriculum, that has deprived my entrance to the university.
On the other hand, the quality of education both my brother and I have been receiving here in the US has enhanced our ability to learn. Financial aid is available to pay off all our tuition, along with pocket money knowing that the student can't afford to buy necessities. Schools are lending supplies such as laptops and educational tools for students free of charge to help with distance learning. Teachers are very helpful and attentive reaching out to the children. Schools start at 9 am, giving children enough time to wake up and enjoy their mornings. Breakfast and lunch are distributed among students free of charge, even during the quarantine period. Students even come home with very little homework to do. Education and schools make students highly motivated in learning, not being forced to wake up early in the morning, or having many of assignments haunting them.
The challenges that students face after graduation in Lebanon are seen as getting a job relevant to what they have studied. Another issue is nepotism: most job assignments are made by officials that are working in the government, and they appoint their relatives or their friend's children, in high positioned jobs. Therefore, the salaries received by some of our students is a lot less than what they should be getting. Our graduates don’t have the opportunity to find a decent job because most of the jobs are hired by illegal people. It is a shame to have a government who couldn’t care less about their citizens who are bleeding to death working so hard to get a degree, only to hang it on the wall. The students who paid high tuition, who sold all that they have just to get a decent education for a prosperous future end up working in a job different from their career, and getting paid so low that they don’t have enough money to support themselves. What kind of government do we have that fails to support the hard-working students, are unable to receive the opportunities comparable to the high education and training they have received throughout the years. Subjective selection and mediation have been playing a very unfair role in our country, leaving many without jobs or education which is encouraging most citizens to immigrate.
Most of our students look forward to being appointed in a job assignment where they are able to contribute to their community as well as support their families. Citizens aren't asking more than just the opportunity of staying in Lebanon next to their loved ones. No one wants to migrate to other countries to get a decent job or education. The desire of Lebanese families is to raise their children among society and friends towards a good education and being able to prepare them for a prosperous future.
Hopefully, our government officials will understand that education and teaching is a gift and a mission for our society and future. May they recognize the worth of education, and not limit it to certain people, but grant it to students whether rich or poor. May they open up their minds, to the fact that the students of Lebanon are for Lebanon's future and not any other country. We have one thing to say to our government: Stop seizing our dreams by making us immigrate away from our roots, because as a government so egotistic stealing away our money and future for your pockets.