Teaching Integrity

Posted by Happy Feraren on July 31, 2016

I always say that one of the main reasons we focus on the youth is because it's difficult to talk to adults. And though I mean this in a tongue-and-cheek way, there is some truth to it. 

One of my most memorable interactions with students was during our first run of the volunteer program in the University of the Philippines, National College of Public Administration and Governance. A student was in front of the classroom reading his reflection paper about his experience monitoring government offices. He shared his personal experience as a volunteer and how he felt guilty the entire time he was a volunteer. In front of the whole class he admitted that he got his student's driving license by using a fixer. He did exactly what he was fighting against. He explained how he really didn't want to do it but his dad made him use a fixer because that's how it was done. And despite knowing that it was wrong, he did it. And that was that.

When we first started Bantay.ph we talked to many experts and people in the good governance / anti-corruption space. Some of them were enthusiastic, most of them looked at us and patted us on our backs, "That's nice dear," as if what we were doing was a cute little project that children do. 

We think people do bad things because they don't know right from wrong, but they do. Especially the students. Corruption seems like something they just inherited as a truth because "it's always been that way." Why should I NOT pay a bribe? There's no incentive for me to do things the right way. And the parents, will approve and even encourage this kind of thinking. 

Remove the concept that you know better 

Concretize values 

Speak their language 
- ditch jargon 

- debate
- puzzles 

They know it already. We don't want them to just know something, we want to create real understanding so that. The duty now of the facilitator is to help students process their knowledge for better understanding. Moreover, we want to help them discover how they can use their skills and talents for good. 

Behaviorist perspective: Reward good behavior, enable good, create systems tha p