Youth


Start by getting rid of the term ‘gang’   Recently updated !

This is something I wholeheartedly agree with. “On Friday, my constituent Zac Olumegbon was murdered in a planned attack close to his school. He was just 15, and I know that the thoughts of the entire House will be with his family at this very difficult time. He was the 13th teenager to lose a life needlessly in our capital city. Can the Prime Minister tell me, the rest of the House and the country what his government is doing, and will be doing, to stop this happening in our communities?” That was the first question I ever asked at […]


The failures of Gang Prevention

This is an interesting report, seeing that Belize is trying to suppress gang activity and so far have been failing miserably at it. I have spoken on this before in discussions noting that the plans rolled out have done nothing more than quite things down for a short period only to make gang activity and crime return with more vengeance. Please take the time to read this report as it is vital to our strategic planning going forward, I will highlight the main points and link to the full report at the bottom of the page; hope the Government of […]


IDB Report on Citizen Security in Belize

The following is a report published by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) dated October 2013. It discusses the lack of citizen security, the ever increasing crime rate, lack of resources to combat it and the underlying aspects that are causing this growth, things I have touched time and again in many discussions like Education, Poverty, failure of our justice system not only in practice but to your citizens in the penitentiary system. Without further adieu, here is the report, and may I say that things have gotten and only keep getting worst. Abstract In the face of rising crime rates […]


Education in Belize: Effective Discipline 1

“If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.” What constitutes effective discipline?  Why should we raise our children subject to some form of discipline?  How do we properly enforce discipline everyday in our homes and schools?  If we do not continuously discipline young people how will they comprehend that there are always consequences to any bad choices they make?  We cannot address these questions comprehensively in just one article; however, we can discuss what discipline is about vs. what it is not.  Most parents and teachers think of discipline as the system of (self) control that we use […]


Education in Belize: Stressing the Positive (From Challenges to Solutions) 1

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In many of my articles I focus on suggesting urgent changes that should/could be made to Belize’s Education system.  I also encourage Education policymakers and educators to stop living in the past, and start adapting teaching methods that are more in line with 21st Century ways of working, learning, and living.  However, I realize that being human we tend to be very sensitive, and my repeated promptings, i.e. “we should or should not” and “let us or let us not”, may eventually end up annoying the very people who the promptings […]


RESPONSIBILITY TO WHOM AND FOR WHAT? 4

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In my articles I try to point out and describe to readers, both inside and outside of Belize, the many responsibilities as well as the essential needs of educators, students, parents, and the community/country at large. The bottom line and ultimate goal of each article presented in this column and on RESPONSIBILITY TO WHOM AND FOR WHAT? is to encourage each individual, not only students but the entire country, to keep improving and growing productively in the new 21st Century. My recent observations and striking descriptions (with apologies to no one) […]


EDUCATORS FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY 8

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In previous articles I pointed out that presently many of our people in Belize are struggling, day in and day out, to survive ever-increasing hard times.  However, as pitiful and miserable as our current violent situations may be, positive change for the better is always within our control.  We will improve on any out-of-hand or dangerous situations in which we live today once we choose to cease living in pathetic, but comfortable, conditions of “learned helplessness”.  (See belizeguidance.blogspot.com for definition.)   It is sad that many of us choose to live under […]


LEARNED HELPLESSNESS 5

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In a previous article I pointed out that in 2013 (too) many people in Belize are struggling, day in and day out, and trying to survive ever-increasing “hard times”. During these very difficult times life gets harder and harder with each passing day. Yet, as of today, I see no public action whatsoever being taken, no suggestions being made, to try to lower the extremely high unemployment rate (especially of highly educated citizens), widespread poverty, gangs openly and violently taking anything and everything they choose from hard-working Belizeans, the dozens of […]


EXCUSES, EXCUSES, EXCUSES 3

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant Today, in 2013, (too) many people in Belize are struggling through “hard times”.  These difficult times specifically include: never-before-seen high unemployment of both the educated and uneducated; widespread poverty that also affects people who once were middle class; gangs fighting openly amongst themselves day and night, blatantly taking anything and everything they can get from hard-working Belizeans; violent and uninvestigated murders by known gangs in increasing numbers almost everyday; more and more closures of what were once successful business establishments that gainfully employed many Belizeans; higher and higher tuition costs for […]


Who Will Improve Our schools? 8

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant We don’t have the best possible Education System in Belize today to prepare our children to live in this era of advanced technology. Before we can create one, though, we must first “want it”! Sadly, Education Systems in Belize have not been developed due to the overwhelming apathy from parents, educators, and the government towards constantly improving our schools. As in most third-world countries, the Education we provide our children in Belize today is what it was 50+ years ago. But my grandchildren should not have to study the same curriculum […]


Schools: Safe and Nourishing Havens 8

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant During my recent 2 years working at a local high school in Belize I quickly found out about the very public cases of students who were gossiped about openly by other students, teachers, and the community.  Some students had parents who were alcoholics and fought a lot, were drug dealers “serving time”, or were physical and emotional abusers at home.  There were many other students with their very own secrets — hidden and locked away from everyone else.  Many were shy students who never said much.  They may have appeared average […]


MOTIVATIONAL STRATEGIES FOR UNMOTIVATED ADULTS 5

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant “There are no hopeless situations; there are only men who have grown hopeless about them.” – Clare Booth Luce (1903 – 1987) The main goal of all professional guidance counselors in schools is to guide and counsel all students; but their top priority is to try to help the troubled ones. During my recent 2 year experience as a guidance counselor in Belize, I worked with many high school students (all levels, from 1st to 4th formers) to help them confront and try to overcome many of their recurring problems. My […]