An older friend and I got talking about his school days. In the late 50s and early 60s they used to have a school forum where school executives and teachers would sit at the top facing the students.
It was not an assembly but a time for student reps to bring up issues , grievances, suggestions, solutions on what the students felt about their school. Students would talk about how they were treated by teachers, they would thank them or highlight teachers weaknesses. In praising and criticisms, teachers would be named. There was no holding back. Issues would be sorted out there and then and executives would hear them and take note. If any were serious it would be taken up to the way, executive forum.
The principal and teachers would answer students questions and or give reasons for their actions.
My friend noted the boldness of students especially discipline and punishment given by teachers. It was usually to go and work in the plantation. Ironically the side effect was that many student got to learn to plant and look after a garden. Something many of them didn't do back home. Each student had a cane knife and the school provided other farm implements.
Wouldn't it be interesting if we could adopt this form.
And I had a chilling thought, how about we have the same for the work place. But in this case workers and employers would sit and discuss issues.
One way we can solve the unemployment issue is to get rid of all the dead wood occupying posts in the civil service.
These are the people who have been around for too long and are 8 to 4.30 employees.
They do not go an extra mile to serve customers and always seem to look busy carrying files and looking thoughtful.
It's very easy to identify them.
Allen Lockington is a self-employed customs agent and business consultant who has regular articles published in Fiji. I thank Allen for permission to reprint some of them in this political blog. They remind us that life goes on, whatever the political situation. And it's good to know that.