ERIC Number: ED389408
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
We Are the Neocolonialists of Micronesia.
Schmitz, Stephen; Pono, M. Odette
Examining the fragmentation and Americanization that pervades education in Micronesia, this paper explores the causes of the fragmentation, which represent a local attempt to modernize education, and the local belief in the superiority of American culture. The consequences of a fragmented world view have been confusion between educational aims and means, and goals and methods. The confusion about the concepts of education, culture, modernization, colonialism, autonomy and reform that exists in Micronesia is exacerbated by eight problems, including the following: (1) educators' confusion of modernization with Americanization when it comes to curricular and methodological reform; (2) reform has taken on an "us vs them" mentality that is intellectually debilitating and counterproductive; and (3) a lack of self-confidence among many of Micronesia's school systems has been combined with failure among administrators to trust the professionalism of teaching faculty. An important first step to resolving this confusion is establishing a philosophy of education that is truly Micronesian. Four suggestions are recommended for developing a distinctly Micronesian pedagogy: (1) give teachers decision-making authority; (2) develop local materials; (3) establish a robust research agenda; and (4) reflect, decide, and help teachers become education's leaders. (AP)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Americanization; Micronesia
Note: Revised version of a paper presented at the Annual Pacific Education Conference (Koror, Palau, August 1-4, 1995).