It has to go in a custom footer (not html module) to work*. The source, which also has some interesting thoughts on the desirability of disabling right click, is below: *Using in a custom footer:replace all code in xslt box with this: ]]>

« Home | Of Pride and Integrity » | Life would become easier after a retake » | It’s not about nursing, but about justice » | Anti-retake board passers may change minds on reta... » | PRC to allow nurses oath-taking after TRO expires » | Nurses insist: No to exam retake » | 17 in nursing test leak named; complaint filed » | Nurse-reviewer apologizes for saying leak was nati... » | SU nursing dean backs exam retake » | Foreign employers wary after RP nurse test leak »


Learn the right lessons

Learn the right lessons

By Rina Jimenez-David
Last updated 01:28am (Mla time) 10/13/2006

Published on Page A15 of the October 13, 2006 issue of the Philippine Daily Inquirer

SINCE there were nine of us siblings, our parents often resorted to wholesale discipline to keep order in the family. When something got broken, or an item was missing, or even when a squabble erupted among us, the younger batch (to whom I belonged) would be summoned and lined up for punishment. Regardless of individual guilt or responsibility, we would all receive the same punishment: a tongue-lashing and a quick pinch in the most sensitive part of the body.

We all felt aggrieved, of course, and blamed each other, and resented our parents for not even trying to get to the bottom of the incident. In their view, it seemed to us, it was far more convenient to mete out punishment to all the suspects equally. Not for them the adage about how it would be better to let the guilty go free rather than punish the innocent.

Maybe President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is of the same parenting school as my late parents. Maybe she thinks everyone who took the nursing board exams this year shares equal responsibility with the few who cheated and took advantage of leaked test questions to improve their chances of passing the test. And that’s why she’s “punishing” everyone by nullifying the results of the exams and requiring everyone to take the test again.

But I’m sure such wholesale punishment doesn’t sit well with the examinees, much as my parents’ brand of discipline didn’t foster unity and mutual responsibility among us siblings. It only taught us to conceal our misdemeanors better.

Protests and pickets have erupted in various parts of the country, led by exam-takers who feel they are being unjustly punished for the wrongdoing of a few cheaters.

At the same time, Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) Chair Leonor Tripon-Rosero has added her voice to the chorus of protest. It had been her position, from the beginning of this controversy, that a mere recalculation of scores by negating the questionable parts of the test was enough to undo the damage done by the leaked questions.

* * *

BUT there’s more to the leak than just test scores and the licensing of unqualified nurses.

There’s the reputation not just of Filipino nurses but of all health care professionals, and the reputation of the Philippines, particularly the reliability of our licensure processes.

Labor Secretary Arturo Brion, who has been given administrative power over the PRC, says even foreign governments have aired concerns about the qualifications of Filipino health personnel. A representative of the Japanese government, he said, had expressed its concern since a recent agreement between the two governments would allow Filipino nurses and caregivers to work in Japan for the first time. Even the governments of the European Union have been asking questions, he said.

As for the United States, as reported in this column, American authorities have postponed making a decision on whether to allow the administration of a state qualifying nursing exam in the Philippines, pending the results of the investigation into the nursing test leaks. Is this likewise an indication of a lack of confidence in the skills of Filipino nurses, or at least on the capacity of the government to guarantee the integrity of nursing boards?

* * *

THERE’S a conflict here between the rights of the “honest” exam takers, who certainly don’t deserve to be punished alongside the cheaters, and the need to protect the reputation of the country’s nurses and licensing bodies. What should prevail? And should individual rights (of the examinees) be sacrificed for the sake of the national reputation?

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), which had been requested by the PRC to conduct an investigation into the leakage, has concluded its probe and named the perpetrators: 17 officials of three review centers, though no names of either officials or review centers have been released thus far.

NBI Director Nestor Mantaring has cleared PRC officials of involvement in the leak, and said the investigators found evidence of a leak only in Manila and Baguio city. He also said that “it would be very hard to pinpoint who benefited,” because some exam takers who were provided with the leaked test questions may have chosen not to take advantage of them.

But the NBI has already identified the review centers that took advantage of the leak, and it should take only a short investigative leap to determine who among the examinees had patronized these review centers and attended their review sessions. Then it should only be a matter of comparing the examinees’ performance in the questionable parts of the test with their performance in the other tests to see if they indeed used the leak to their advantage.

* * *

ADMITTEDLY, this would take a lot more time and effort, and Malacañang has already said it wanted to wrap up the matter as soon as possible.

But determining who cheated and who did not is not just a matter of determining who should retake the test and who won’t have to. It’s also a matter of basic justice, of punishing the guilty and letting go -- or in this case, licensing -- the innocent.

It also seems to me a fair solution to the conflicting claims of the innocent exam-takers and those concerned about the reputation of Filipino nurses and the state of nursing education here.

Certainly, let’s go after the review centers and their owners and officials who paid for the leaked questions and passed these on to their students. Let’s also identify who these students are and require them to take the nursing board exam all over again, if only to determine if they are indeed qualified to work as nurses. But let’s also not punish those who studied for the exam and relied on their own intellect, memory and experience to get a passing grade.

Let’s make sure everyone learns the right lesson this time. least someone from the journalism sect spoke well in the light of this matter.... I hope this could bring realization to those blinded by this issue

Post a Comment

PBSN Forum


- Video and Image Hosting