Tuesday, February 28, 2012

We don't need no edukation! Riots & multiple Arson attempts in Omani high schools

Oman's students are revolting. Oh yes, protests have broken out at schools across the Batna coast. Some schools were closed by the ROP, and there were multiple arson attacks - one successful. As the newspaper Times of Oman, Anees Al Zedjali's much admired throbbing organ of the Omani 4th Estate, put it here, the crimes were committed by "miscreants" [I love the olde worlde English the expat staff at ToO use, especially when the thesaurus comes out!]

Photo: Widespread school protests in Oman are leading to acts of Arson.

Arson in Al Khoud school
Seeb: Unidentified miscreants yesterday morning set ablaze some classrooms in an Al Khoud school, located in the wilayat of Seeb.

Sources said that the culprits set the classroom afire with the help of tyres.

This incident follows a wave of protests that has lashed some schools in some regions of Oman following the high failure rates in the examinations and discontinuation of the previous promotion policy by the Ministry of Education.

Investigations are on to nab the culprits, a spokesman from the Royal Oman Police said.

And it's great to see it being reported, again in ToO. The kids are upset that they actually have to pass exams, and are blaming the teachers. How the arson helps their cause, I don't know.

Omani Student's are demanding to pass their exams, 'or else'.

High failure rate leads to protests in schools

Muscat: Students of some schools in the Sultanate launched protests against the high rate of failure in the examinations for Grades 10 and 11, citing the abolition of the earlier promotion system for this.

Some schools reportedly also witnessed acts of arson following the protests that occurred last week.

Scores of students gathered at Moosa bin Nadeer School in Al Hail area and went on a protest in the morning protesting the high failure rate in the school compared to other Muscat schools. The students blamed “unqualified” teachers for their failure in the examinations.

The Majlis had a meeting about Education a couple of days ago. As with all Majlis reporting, there is zero information about their discussion, problems, goals, progress, actions, et al.

Majlis panel meets to find solutions to education snags

Majlis panel meets to find solutions to education snags
Muscat: The Education and Culture Committee of the Majlis Al Shura yesterday held its meeting under the chair of Khalid bin Hilal Al-Nabhani, head of the Committee.

During the meeting, members reviewed the suggestions sent to the committee by citizens and took appropriate decisions.

They also discussed a number of educational issues and the problems facing government and private educational institutions and sought to find solutions to overcome these issues.

Excellent. Good to see the problem is in safe hands, and that plans are in place! This does not bode well for Oman's education system. There are already huge issues with teachers allowing plagiarism and rampant cheating. The schools in general churn out poorly educated & unmotivated students. English is terrible. The cirriculum is based on repetition and rote.

But at least they can line up at the 'job seekers' office later on and get $400 a month. Or 'supervise' an Indian worker.

In the same edition, Editor in Chief Essa Al Zedjali raves about the 1 Omani who just got a patent in Spain for an energy invention (which is good news, I agree), and goes on to claim this indicates how Omani education is soaring, and heralds an intellectual renaissance in the Sultanate. [Note, I'm advised all of the Opinion pieces are actually written by the (Indian) senior Editor, and then tweaked by Essa. LOL]

Sheikh Hilal is a product of this Blessed Renaissance — an empowered and unfettered mind and a child of liberalism ushered by the visionary ruler, His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. Einstein said: “All of science is nothing more than refinement of everyday thinking.”

The uninterrupted run of peace and modernisation of the past 41 years of Omani Renaissance has indeed helped many brilliant Omani minds to refine their everyday thinking. Sheikh Hilal has proved the paradigm true.

A brilliant mind, hard working and competent to his core, Sheikh Hilal has proved our yet another conviction. Given the right ambience, opportunity and encouragement, Omanis too are competent enough to prove their worth in every conceivable field of human activities, especially in science and technology. Sheikh Hilal is the brightest testimony of the fact that Renaissance has been a benign movement and the country is indeed moving along the right track of modernisation.

Looking at the photos of the protestors, I can see they all look like the sort of bright talented hard working young minds that will be generating patents, creating world dominating businesses and being nominated for Nobel prizes.

Hey, at least we're better than Yemen.


  1. A student is as good as his teachers and if they fail it is because they have been let down by the system. UK is the same with complaints in the papers about the low standards of education leaving children with an inability to do proper match or construct a proper sentence. And why shouldnt they join the unemployment queue to claim in their own country when in UK every dick, tom and harry can claim when fresh off the plane or boat majority unable to even speak the language. Making a mockery of a generation being let down by the system isnt hilarious when the problem is the same the world over.

    The oter problem also lies in the fact that we have under educated expats whose patronising attitude is to demoralise the locals. We have plenty of highly educated people who are worth their weight overseas and have proved it and have come home only to be offered a job under unqualified bosses(expats)who use their talents to better themselves.

    As for the Indian workers they should be grateful they have jobs somewhere as back home there are none and please do not make them out to be angels. Most of them are not qualify and learn when they come over here but if they dont like it you can direct them to UK as plenty over there lording over the freebies they get. And since any qualifications they have are worth nothing in UK, Europe and US why should we accept them.

    Aziza Al Busaidy

    1. Aziza - Lets not generalize the Indian workers or if you must get your facts straight. There are various schools in India, read: IIM's, ISB, IIT that have companies from the UK, Europe & US directly recruit from. Lets not even get into the number of 'Indian' workers holding top management positions in the above countries -they have been educated in India.

      'Indians' are grateful to have jobs anywhere ! Oman included. Being enterprising has something to do with it.

      I do agree with you that there are a large number of unqualified workers. The reason being -

      1)Qualified workers have better job options back in India, facilities are better & so is the pay.
      2)There is a bias between salaries offerered to Indian expats & western expats for performing the same jobs. Not all 'Indians' are subservient, not all of them will accept the bias.
      3)Qualifications are not given importance, its understood that when you hire an 'Indian' you want cheap labor. Companies here would much prefer to hire an idle housewife over a qualified professional.

      you pay peanuts - you employ monkeys.. Its as simple as that.

      - Effy B.

    2. Aziza,

      How wrong are you and i am sure you got such a wrong thought process because of a poor education system. Out of curiosity and i bet who must have studied in one of the local school which doesnt even teach you how to respect humanity.. Aziza i pity u an dur thought process .. may god save u ...
      Take a look around and most of the business are run by Indians and all of the business owners trust them more than their own family members.. and even check out HM he too has people around him helping him mange his finance and other activites who are in turn Indians and inorder to retain them they have been given the citizenship ...
      or else who in the world will come to work in this barren land ..
      its just the OIL revenue which is talking imagine if there was no OIL what would have happened to you ... arent u scared to even imagine,,, everything comes free to you wherien in actual world you have to earn hence you cant get even the basic respect as u cant give that...

    3. Oh please, spare me and Aziza your unwarranted pity. India does have issues with overpopulation and a lot of Indians come to Oman, or the UAE or any other Arab country. The majority of them are not qualified or educated and you completely ignore this. I leave it at that.
      Yet you go so far as to say that Aziza was taught in a local school that doesn't "teach you how to respect humanity". Yet Aziza's use of English in comparison to yours is much more sophisticated as well readable. Seeing as you use "ur" instead of ur, you don't capitalize your "i" and say "u" instead of you. Lets spell check before we criticize others shall we?
      So I pity your generalization, because I have met many expats and Omani's who have the utmost respect for humanity even though they went to a local school.

  2. There are always good and bad students, however good or bad a teacher is. Nevertheless is it true that the standard of teaching in the sultanate is on the lower end of the scale, mostly due to the fact that the Omani teachers learnt teaching from Indian teachers who practice a very outdated style of teachercentred teaching. However, one should not forget that this country only has had schools for the last 40 years, and to me, is doing pretty well for that! I have taught at various colleges in Oman and have met both very talented as well as hopeless students. I have heard terrible stories about examination procedures and teachers "helping" students, because exams ( imported from Egypt!) ask questions that were never covered in class. Surely there is a lot of room for improvement in the education system here and revolting students to me are a good sign: at least they show awareness of the fact that it needs to change. On the other hand should we not forget that there are a lot of caring and hardworking teachers in the many schools of Oman who are limited by the system and not their abilities or motivations when it comes to good teaching. To me, it is really the teachers who should be protesting!

  3. Sorry, Aziza, but the problem is NOT the same all over the world. I am unaware of any students, any where in the world, except for in Oman, that are protesting because THEY failed. If you are Omani, you should be embarrassed and ashamed concerning the actions of these students.

    Also, in the US, people can only get unemployment AFTER they have worked for a certain amount of time and have earned a certain amount of money. THEN if they lose their job for a reason that is not their fault THEN a person can collect unemployment. Unemployment benefits are not given to people who refuse to work or have not worked.

    Oman is unique in the Gulf region in that they accept Indian teachers in their schools and as English teachers. No other Gulf country accepts this. Why? Can hire Indian teachers MUCH more cheaply than other trained teachers. And lack of qualified Omani teachers... and lack of Omani teachers willing to work.

    So you get what you pay for!!!

    1. Stop talking rot about Indian teachers and their standards , i think u are not aware that the best universities and schools in the world have INDIAN teachers , check Kellogs, LSE, LBS, HBR , Insead all dominated by Indians the quality of education and equally teachers and students are best.
      Its just that every person has his her needs and accordingly compromises and comes to work out of one's nation and remember if Indians were not there or in fact any of the sout east asian countries didnt come to work in GULF.. god knows what would have happend to this countries..

  4. Hey dragon, how about researching through your sources, some details about Omani citizenship problems for children who have either a mom or dad as an Omani???

  5. I'm sure I have seen Indian teachers elsewhere in Arabia.....and I'm sure many of them are very good teachers too. Let's not generalise too much eh ?

    Aziza, from where do you get the idea that expat bosses are underqualified or undereducated ? We are all here specifically to do a job, and if we don't perform, we're terminated. There are no obstacles to terminating an expat's contract or visa, so it's simply not possible for us to hang around unless we're performing our functions to the required standard.

    Speaking as a Brit, I can tell you that competition for jobs in Oman back home is fierce (have you seen the weather there ?)...

  6. Oh dear, English is terrible. Why pick on one subject? We all know system is not working, but it's so funny that the Brits always complain about English. I'm bored of listening to expats who lived here for 10 or 20 years complaining of poor English of a bank clerk or similar (why don't they speak Arabic). Why would they speak English? When you go to HSBC in London, can anyone help you in any language other than English? I know, I'm totally offtopic.

  7. The reason you get Indian teachers with low skills in the GCC is that Indians with good English do not choose teaching as a profession.They choose instead to be engineers,journalists or work in the West.
    I agree with Aziza about some Indian educational qualifications not being accepted in the US,UK,Australia,etc. Australia, for example require non-Australian engineers to have their skills assesed by an Australian engineering organisation.


  8. "expat bosses are underqualified or undereducated ?" . What will you say about Indian born Nasa scientists in US, and other countries ... If an Omani was included , he could sit there , eat a shawarma and bought the space ship down ... As long as the government is pampering you guys , you wont learn responsibilty ... You guys should prove ure balls by outperforming the expats and not stand on their heads ... You can see Indian born people outperforming in all fields in Canada , US , Europe... Indians are coming here not because they are uneducated , they were recruted to Oman by Omani boses because u omanis cant prove ure balls ... I stress Omani bosses because no expat can start a business here . its ure nationals who are recruting Indians as u guys are inefficient . You guys learn 40% from the expats and then Omanize him . If u guys have the guts and the brains 'Go for 100% Omanization' . that u guys wont do....


    1. as an indian who's run away form his country because he can't find a decent job, YOU have a lot of guts talking to US OMANIS like this. I am an omani teacher and my competition is an indian with 35 teaching qualifications behind his name, and no personality. he gets hired because he accepts his value at 400 rials, and hence come here, to feed his family and steal jobs from qualified productive omanis. and our students are failing not only because of indian teachers who lack the good will to transfer their skills to their students, but because of other nationalities with the same demeaning qualities, who are here for the weather, or to run away from their homes. A decent expat is someone who gives back to the community in those 8 hours he is paid to work, not look down, sneer on and patronize the local workforce. I have met expats who have been sincere in their employment and genuine with their staff, indians included. they obviously were much better people than you are, and clearly much more educated and professional. you my friend seem to suffer from an identity crisis... so please respect yourself, because obviously you are not one of those great indians who made it into nasa, and even if you were, you would end up compromising their missions due to the chutni masala smell oozing from your pores. respect yourself, or go back to your country and live on the streets.

  9. In response to some of the above mentioned comments....Aiziza -

    'A student is as good as his teachers and if they fail it is because they have been let down by the system'

    Up to a point, I would agree, BUT, there also has to be a willingness on the part of student to bother to study and learn what is being taught too. It is a two way process. If the students are failing, then maybe they are not bothering to put the hard work in, in the first place. Look at the protests last year by the student nurses, demanding a lower pass mark!! I know for a fact, that the student nurses are being taught by very well qualified and experience tutors (both Omani and Expat). Does this really reflect well on the mindset of students in this country?

    Also, as far a Omanis coming back from abroad with qualifications and then as you say

    " We have plenty of highly educated people who are worth their weight overseas and have proved it and have come home only to be offered a job under unqualified bosses(expats)who use their talents to better themselves"

    For the majority of expat bosses, not only do they have to have the qualifications, but, also, the job experience to be able to be in that position. The only analogy I can give (coz it is my field of experience) - would you expect a newly qualified nurse, of any nationality (who obtained their Bachelor of Science in Nursing in a western institution), but, with NO clinical experience, be put as an Incharge in a hospital ward? NO...and therin lies the rub! Qualifications are all very well, but, unfortunately, without relevant hands on experince in that particular field, are, to all intents and purposes - USELESS.
    So, imho, I feel that yes, there are a lot of hardworking, intelligent Omani's, who, in the long run, will be able to move this country forward. But, they must be made aware that a management position does not happen the day after they graduate, and the Ministry should not allow them to continue to think that this is how the career ladder works! By all means, promote suitably qualified and experienced Omanis, but, don't throw the baby out with the bath water!!


  10. Plenty of excuses from all sorts - so firstly Omani employ Indian Labourer because they are cheaper and and not for any other reason because the people running these company do not want to pay the going rate of 21st century.
    Secondly the worst education system in Gulf is in Oman because the system doesnt want to spend money to bring in better standards of teachers hence the country and its people are still stuck in the so called and over touted Renaissance (14-16 century European art and learning)which has resulted into the fiasco we are seeing today.
    Thirdly we have the highest unemployment because the people concerned have been burying their heads in the sand while the other Gulf Countries faced reality and caughted investors and developed their country to accomodate the growing population. Majority of Omanis are outside the Country due to this and those inside are feeling the frustration of being in a dead end situation.
    Since it is the Government blindness to reality they need to share some of the oil revenue to avert social disaster which occurs with unemployment.
    And no we dont want US style system where if you dont have a job you end up on the street and if you cannot afford a medical insurance you die on the street. If we must copy for humaritarian ad well being of the country and its people then it is to UK we must look for example. DEFINATELY NOT US.
    And to that Anon 10.11 Indian - the people have the guts but the Mafia that control the country dont want it hence we are stuck in limbo until the country explodes. An Explode it will - th writing is on the wall as they say unless you are blind.
    As for the qualification - those who disagree better check again caus eI have yet to see Indian Teachers, Engineers, Doctors or Lawyers to name a few who did not have to resit.

    Aziza Al Busaidy

  11. Agree with most of what you said Aziza and not so much with the rest of your content, however passionate it was.
    The one about under-qualified and under-educated 'bosses' enjoying a position of power in most organizations in Oman is pretty simple actually.
    I will dumb it down for you a little.
    Fact : Key positions of governance in an organizations taken(taken is a wrong word since that implies it was almost done by force, see what I did there)by expatriates more often than not :Indians. Positions such as CFOs, CEOs. These are the people making key decisions because of their expertise and experience.
    Case in point: An incident that shows that there are a few people that do understand how things are working.
    During the protests and riots that shook the country recently, there were some that took place in the capital as well. This particular case concerns the OHI office in MQ. There was a large group of Omani employees that were protesting against their wages and the removal of the Indian CEO(Why should they be left behind when the rest of the country was doing it?) The owner of OHI is an ex-finance minister for Oman. He proceeded to call the leaders of the protest into his room. (There were apparently around eight leaders) He also called the current CEO. He then asked the leaders of the protest if there was any one amongst them who was willing to take the Indian CEOs position and take on all his roles and responsibilities. Not surprisingly, no one volunteered. Passion doused and protest culled.

    I doubt if the ex-Finance minister of Oman would take rash or stupid decisions like employing "under-qualified" expats in key positions.

    In response to 'INDIAN's comments. How could you even think of an Oman without Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis? 100% Omanisation would result in the following:

    1. Dreadlocks coming back into fashion because after 100% omanisation who would cut your hair?
    2. Incomplete buildings because after 100% omanization who would do menial labour?
    3.Refuse everywhere because after 100% omanization who would clean your filth?

    We have a small boon to thank God almighty though : Aziza is not in a seat of power to make decisions.


  12. Oman is lucky to have so many hard-working expatriate workers from all over the globe, especially India....Not the other way round!

    No one should feel 'grateful' to have a job here....Let's face it, expatriate workers are in the Gulf to do the jobs that the locals either refuse to do, or are simply incapable of performing. Like anywhere else in the world, expatriate labor and skills are most definitely exploited in this part of the world.

    The maid getting paid 50 OMR a month to clean up after family seven days a week is not indebted to anyone! What's that? Less than two riyals a day. Nothing to be 'grateful' about.

    The locals should be 'grateful' that God has blessed their country with oil and a benevolent leader.

    Unfortunately, it won't always be like this for Oman....Already on the downward slide I suspect.

  13. Mmmmmm. Tick, tick, tick, tick...

    Jobs? Well, a Blue City didn't work did it? All those hi-tech jobs as well. Gone. Gone. Wasted! Terrible. But what about enlisting/mobilising all these thick git's with no qualifications and building say... A pyramid? That should fix it. Marvellous things pyramids. It fixed it once before somewhere else. Build two, build three! The world could do with some new ones. There we are. Job done. Now, that should bring in the tourists shouldn't it? It's that or, maybe a war against the Yemen, Abu Dhabi, Somalia or whomever. Why a war? Why indeed? Its traditional though so 'nuffing too difficult there. Its also quick to organize. It's easy too. No IQ required. No 'riting, reading, or maffs needed. For war's I mean. Put 'em all in the army (or the Navy)then. Left, right, left right... That's a bit more traditional... innit? I mean all these planes, tanks, ships, helicopters? What are they for? Attacking Pakistan? Or, how about an Opera with a cast of millions with some mad Italians heading it up. Got a building for it eh? That could be the HQ. Hollywood (or Bollywood) would luv it. All a bit camp that, but camp's good eh? ...Bonk, bonk, bonk. It is Oman after all. Shirt-lifters everywhere dearie. Oh my, what's a lad to do? Maybe Shk. Hilal can come up with a brill idea? Quick! Call Spain.

    Tick, tick, tick, tick...

    The African Queen

  14. Omanisation is a disaster and when they will pile up we will call it catastrophe! In health sector for sure there is yet to see better outcome of Omanisation. Some passionate advocates of Omanisation are blind to reality now at least publicly. Omani Corrupt are not punished, Omani incompetence is covered up, Omani poor work ethics are glossed over but more than ready (Aziza cult!) to victimise expatriates at a drop of a hat especially poor indians! Oman seriously lacks vision but boasts to have vision so many times that it is almost rude to counter it with facts/realities!! This is the beginning of the fall!!Amen!

  15. It is quit right that Oman is a victim of too many indian... sorry malalyees.. I know many malaylees who could not speak any other language then their own and shaking their heads, still survives. It is generosity I must say of Omani people to accommodate them. I wish I could have some sort of data to show how many other nationalities do the big business groups represent other then indian ... sorry malalyee.. like bahwan, Khalili, Gulfar etc etc.

    Secondly, It is very important to understand scio economic factors and difference between Expat.. Specially malalyees and omanis, when comparing there productivity and commitment to work cometments For example
    When expat comes to work here he dosent any kind social bonding except send money back home. They work day night for the period of two years and then go home on leave for two or more months(which actually is inhuman). Where as Omani worker has all is family here and strong social bonding. He/She have to intend there marriages , family funerals,and all the other stuff which normal human beings do.

    On the contrary our omani friends should not forget all those expats who choose Oman 30/ 40 years back when it was just baren land on many other options they could have pursued.


  16. Very Sad, parents to be blamed for not teaching their own children the importence of education and have to respect the teachers.

    Parents go to schools and complain against the teachers for giving their children homeworks. Also some principles support parents and not supporting the teachers.

  17. Oh my goodness! Essa quoted Einstein! One of those Jews who Essa himself said were responsible for the Holocaust.

    Or perhaps for all his worldliness, Essa didn't know Einstein was Jewish and had to flee the Nazi regime ?

  18. Failure of education system is result of the poor performance and corruption of previous education minister and his clan as well as government as whole.
    They introduced a system of letting no student fail regardless of his/her level , made exams so easy and let cheating be normal practice. When minister was changed to a more decent person and after teachers’ protests to abolish this system of no failure/dumb left behind , the truth came out which is : Our education was in shambles all those years back !! Its as simple as that.
    Some people couldn’t handle the facts and started burning their own classes!!
    It all goes back to fact that we have no mechanisms to keep track on performance of our government officials and at mercy that someday HM will notice and take action!
    Rinse and repeat for all other government branches.


  19. Oman? Oman is just a 'wonderful' Clusterfuck of life's amusing absurdities. Its basically clusterfuck central. Again, and again, and again... Tis of no surprise. Why all the angst? Go with it. Chill brothers. Its just the way it is. Its part of Oman's batty charm. Its why all the Expats like it. Its a giggle. Even the lowest paid Indian roadsweeper falls about laughing at stupidity of it all. What I like best is all those over-dressed palace guards (aka wooden 'wind-up' / 'chocolate soldiers') at the palace. Seriously, are you kidding me! Get real. This is the 21st Century. Isn't it?

    Willie D.

  20. these students...many were out causing ridiculous massive traffic jams celebrating oman's win against thailand in the asian qualifiers, mistakenly thinking we actually made it to the world cup. Saw a disturbingly high number of homosexual "khaniths" strutting their stuff doing their fairy dances, a couple of them even got propositioned and picked up right in front of us. Can we have a post about male sexuality in oman?

  21. I hadn't heard about it because the schools where I live seem to be fine.

    But about people mad about Indian teachers. They mean, Indian English teachers usually, or lecturers in other subjects using highly accented English. Same goes for Sudani, Egyptian, ect English teachers. And would also go for certain ENGLISH english accents, like certain Scottish brogues, or hackney, ect. IF they have a confusing accent it doesn't help the teaching process. THAT WAS ALL THAT WAS MEANT, not that their education was substandard compared TO the Omani teachers.

    Sometimes bad teachers are to blame. Attendance rates for teachers in some boys schools are attrocious and I've heard of drunken school directors. In these cases, the students should be upset, but because they have been poorly educated, are used to handouts, know a little but not enough (like other countries get unemployment benefits but not how or why), they don't know how to demand a better solution than "pass us even if we get under 50%".

    So thus the arson from the dumb*#@$*. Like the saying goes, "A little knowledge can be dangerous".

    The Omani education does need some serrious reforms. Unfortunately the students don't know how to go out in a constructive way demanding them or what they really need. Getting rid of the "pass no matter what" is a good thing.

  22. Having lived in Oman till a few years back, I was struck by the deceptively idyllic nature of the country. It was quite obvious that under the cloak of calm, lay deep rooted social problems - that of personal indebtness and that of poor employability. The latter clearly a result of a very undemanding and tolerant school system wherein the only requirement to pass out seemed to be the ability to bully the school into not failing anybody. After all failing an Omani child tantamounted to denying him his basic right to learn! Well the chickens are coming home to roost.

    I do hope that a radical overhaul of the education system is brought about because that is the only, repeat only, way that can bring order to Omani society.....otherwise the increasing social tension will tear society apart.

    Everything else that you see around you, especially expats working in your country, are merely symptoms and not the cause of your problems.

  23. Put them in Indian Schools!

    1. Most Omanis are only a few generations away from being Indian anyway, as shown by their fluency in Hindi whilst demeaning one of their drivers, or houseboys, or cooks, or fluffer, or any other member of their staff- at home or at work.

      I would put forward that many of the students resorted to their actions because no-one would listen to their grievances due to the massive disconnect between this generation and the generation that is running the country. And unfortunately many of the guys running the country have little or no education and in this culture you honour your elders and don't question them.....at least it used to be, and that is just one of the changes that the country is late to see coming.

      Just like Dubai did when it fell to it's knees a few years back, Oman needs to press the reset button, cull the herd and start again wiser, stronger and more purposefully.

    2. In reply to the first paragraph of your reply -

      Are we talking about getting good education or about becoming Indians, or learning the language?

      My point in saying "Put them in Indian Schools" was so that they know the level of education, the toughness in curriculum and so on.

      What sources of yours say that the people running the country currently "have little or no education?"

  24. In my first paragraph I meant that they would feel at home there. I have nothing to base it on except the articles I read in the local papers, but the Indian schools here seem to be of a pretty good standard.
    Many Omanis complain of the relatively poor education of many of the countries influencers- not necessarily just the Ministers. I get the feeling that many of the young and ambitious are waiting for many of them to be moved sideways, retired or replaced with people who are more tuned to the needs of the country and those of her people.
    As with so many anonymous posts on an internet forum, it often seems that one size fits all when comments are made and that a large brush is being used for all, but in this case that is not what I was trying to imply. Of course there are some well educated and smart guys running the country, but how many of them got educated here and how many of the old-school were?

  25. Let me rephrase the last sentence:

    How many of the well-educated and smart guys that people are turning to for leadership were educated in Oman? I suspect the number is inversely related to the number of the establishment who did come through the Oman school system when it was in it's genesis.

  26. ROFL!!!!

    I thought reading UD's blog posts was entertaining. Who was to expect the comments... priceless!

  27. "All a bit camp that, but camp's good eh? ...Bonk, bonk, bonk. It is Oman after all. Shirt-lifters everywhere dearie. Oh my, what's a lad to do?"


    Oman is essentially pointless except for giving expats a place to earn some good tax free cash while laughing at the locals in all their idiocy.

    Love it!

  28. No worries mate- plenty of expat shirt-lifters here too, earning tax-free cash with some bonk, bonk dearie too.

  29. Pinky and The BrainMarch 5, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    hahaha. I always like a good laugh. Thank you!

    Quote of the day:
    I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them think. - Socrates

    hahahaha. I have tears in my eyes.

  30. British and obsession with gays !
    Germans fuck you and laugh all the way to the bank in every way of life!!

  31. A good thing Hitler wasn't obsessed with gays.

    Please remove your socks when putting your sandals on.

  32. Gay's, gay's gay's. Gay folk are everywhere. UK, Germany, Oman, Saudi etc., etc. leave 'em alone. If left alone gay's cause no harm, and DO add plenty to society in general. Its only when what comes naturally gets 'buried' (and gays are natural), in society that life starts to get get f*cked up - as in Oman as it moves more to a sterner pan-Arab (Wahhabi?) mindset. Hitler? More than likely a closet gay (hence his issues), and I seem to recall that the German's tried to wipe out all er, umm, miscreants... No? "Germans f*ck you"? Yeah, tell the Greeks. And by the way I am not gay, but if I was I would vigorously demand my human rights - more especially if I was Arab. Just as I do in demanding my secular humanist rights.

    If Oman had the courage to stick with is PROGRESSIVE Ibadhi culture it could help dig the Middle East out of its ultimate (current) fundi dead-end. There is much to be admired in Omani culture, but the wastafarian gangsters are killing it for their own ill-gotten and ill-mannered aims.

    Transparency in Oman? Probably impossible, and the trickle-down to matters of education discipline and standards are a very, very clear sign of this.

    Within education in the UK and the US it has (in-part) become 'cool' to be thick, and especially so within the dafter Art's subjects. In Oman it has sadly become cool to cheat.

    Willie D.

  33. Culture of entitlement...that's whats wrong here, the poor education system is merely a symptom, although its a very serious one.

    I think it was Aziza who mentioned earlier, and I quote..

    "And no we dont want US style system where if you dont have a job you end up on the street and if you cannot afford a medical insurance you die on the street"

    Well that's all very wonderful, however, living in a world of safety nets that support society means that society must share equally and actually work. Hard. lets face it, sharing and working hardly form the backbone of this country. By the way...by sharing I don't mean that Omani's are unkind, I'm talking about the wealth gap that exists here, wealth doesn't flow down...it flows around certain social strata...take a drive into the interior of this place and see for yourself. You don't have to go very far.

    Problem is, that wealth isn't the wealth of of the nation...its just oil, pumped out of the ground by expatriates who earn nice salaries and get a suntan then go home and retire in the country of their choice when the oil runs out and fondly remembers Oman as a fun but ultimately screwed up part of the middle east. Makes for some cool stories though. Here's a a story I'll take with me, during the Sohar riots, a couple of young and "desperate" Omani's blockaded the main road...parked their cars across it...one of them was a Mustang. All I could think to myself was:
    "Dude, you are unemployed and you drive a Mustang....you have lost any social right to protest your situation the moment you started that V8 up...I'm sorry"

    This now brings us back to education, Oman needs to learn what hard work is, that reward comes after hard work....that sometimes you will work hard and still fail, that you need to get up and try again. The nation as a whole has to work at it,face up the fact that its in a crises...the government, teachers AND STUDENTS need to take responsibility. I get the feeling that each one is waiting for the other to do something and both blame the third.

    Time is ticking, you probably have about a generation left...by the time the kids being born today are reaching the peak of their economic strength and earning power, oil will not be viable in Oman, probably not even in the middle east.

    Think about that.

  34. word on the street is that bombs were used in 2 cases...wonder if that's true.

  35. "Makes for some cool stories though. Here's a a story I'll take with me....."

    How about another story, that after a few days of sitting on the roundabout protesting, many Omanis paid Pakistanis to wear dish-dashas and sit there pretending to be protestors!

    As someone in the oil industry, let me say that '...its just oil, pumped out of the ground by expatriates who earn nice salaries and get a suntan then go home and retire in the country of their choice....' is an ageing analogy of the current status of the oil industry. Sure, there are expats at the top of the strata, but they are increasingly being replaced by Omanis, many of them very good because the oil companies have spent a lot of money training and retaining these guys. As you say though, by the time the industry is self-sufficient they will be sucking fumes out of the sand and will all need to be retrained as tour-guides for this incredibly well positioned tourism industry that is going to bring untold wealth to a country that treats it's natural resources like a fucking garbage dump.

    1. Outsourcing your rage and protest to cheap labour...you know, that is actually quite inspired really.

      With regards to my analogy, I suspect you are correct, however I wouldn't want to speculate on the efficiency of this training process. I think the net loss of experience is the problem here, I know a couple guys who have had to train their replacement in relatively short space of time before their contracts were due to be not renewed. Knowledge is one thing, experience is a little more fickle.
      I'm no expert on this matter so am possibly asking for a flaming here, but I wonder if one of the results of this experience drain is the short term management of the wells, push them to hard for a while and then wreck them...less beam pumps and more ESP's? That's bound to help the situation.

      An even bigger worry isn't actually Oman itself...its what the rest of this region will look like when Oil stops being the numero-uno global commodity. This could turn out to be an interesting neighborhood..."You want to go to Muscat for a Holiday?...cool, where is it?...Border of Yemen and Saudi you say?

      Ah yes, tourism...about that...

  36. It's an awful disaster about the education in Oman. I believe that it's intend that way on purpose to promote the private schools. Who is the owner of these private schools?! It is going to affect the future of Oman very badly, that they choose to collect money instead of developing intelligent minds.

  37. It is a culture of entitlement here and hard work with the more menial of tasks is often considered "below themselves" by many Omani's. I'll give an example - i offered to an Omani close by to my house whether any of his son's wanted to make some RO by cleaning up around my yard once a week, watering garden etc... reply was "no way that's for expat Indians, not for us Omani's to do". Point is, the youth don't know any different to what they have grown up with - it's the elder Omani's that are absolutely at fault where the entitlement to not do menial tasks has been engrained here. In the end I paid a Bangladeshi guy, who knew what hard work was and was happy to receive almost a month's wages for twice a week of work at my place. Grow up Oman, you have a long way to go before you become self-sufficient with your labour force.

  38. Well, who are the ones picking fruits or cleaning restrooms in the US, are they Caucasians (almost never) or Mexicans?
    Fact is you cannot expect an Omani or any Khaleeji for that matter to be happy doing a lowly job like a Bengladishi or Indian. People are accustomed to different standards of living and jobs, so if someone wants to do a certain level of job in his on country, if i may add, he has every right to do so.
    Till then let gardening and cleaning jobs be done by those used to it, and often, happy to do it. After all, God created different nations with different types of people and it is naive to believe everyone is equal.

    1. That would be fine if these kids were getting an education to prepare them for white collar jobs, but they are not. India provides both the brains and the muscles of the Omani work force. Show some gradtitude and humility.

  39. I know a person who taught as a teacher in one of the Omani Schools.To put it bluntly her experience of the Omani system led her to question what was even education.Literacy was one thing, education is another.

    Her main complaint was that the parents were too overpowering and didn't like the fact that the teachers were correcting their children.Coming late to school was acceptable,not doing homework as well as absenteeism.

    This teacher got yelled many times by the parents because a child complained that the teacher scolded a child for not paying attention and doing his homework.Her main job, instead of teaching , became babysitting.The children dont like to study nor are they corrected by their parents that studies are important.

    The parents are very much to blame since they create a culture of laziness amongst the youth.Going to school is merely an exercise wherein the students will pass regardless of not studying or just reading the title of the topic.The schools were only a place to socialize and not study.

    All this isn't determined by the teacher.It is not that the teaching standards are low.That is a very big misconception.The teachers ARE MADE to do this by the management and in turn by the parents.The teachers must follow orders given by the management.They have no say.They MUST pass the students, no questions asked.Otherwise they are terminated from their posts.

    Indian teachers can teach, I can say that for certain or else the Indian schools wouldn't have been churning out merit holders and the Indian education system is very very competitive and out of the league compared to the Omani System.Studies are placed at a premium in the Indian society.

    Omani parents must look into the studies of the child and provide the impetus for learning.It can't be just the teacher.

    Unless the Omani School management and in turn the system reforms the education system and puts emphasis on hard work the working population will be useless.

    The culture of entitlement, privileges and not doing 'lowly' jobs by the Omanis will be a huge problem once the oil runs out.

    In other countries, people work very very hard to build a nation,be it China,India,UK,US.

    Oman needs instil hard work,no nonsense,'I will do any job' ethic to its citizens so that its workforce can become productive in the future,especially when the fields run dry.


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