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Confessions of a Romanian teacher: 'One of my students was selling his homework for food'

23 Oct 2018   •   10:50
Confessions of a Romanian teacher: 'One of my students was selling his homework for food' 114

Cristian Tunegaru, teacher at one Romanian school shared an emotional story on Facebook:

'I met a child who was selling his homework for food. He was a skinny child, with a small body frame, who was coming from a big family. Between classes he was staying in the the back of the classroom and was eating a sandwich made on half a bread. The food was not made by his mom but was actually earned from a classmate to whom he sold his math homework. He was the best at math, and the kids noticed that, creating a market for the selling of assignments in reurn for food.

For a while no one knew what was happening, untill Andrei told me that Mihai stole his food. I saw Mihai in the back of the classroom holding tightly to a sandwich. While I was trying to understand what was happening and why such a good kid would steal, I noticed pride in his eyes, which at the moment I did not understood. He did not tell me anything. Later on I found out what happened, Mihai did an assigment for Andrei, who refused to pay him as promised, with food. Then, Mihai decited to take whhat was rightfully his: the sandwich.

My first thought was that stealing cannot be accepted, that is morally wrong to sell and buy knowledge. However,who was I to judge like this when a child was suffering and his health was decling due to hunger?  Who was I to tell him that tomorrow he will not eat, when I knew he was hungry? How could I talk about moral principles when a child was starving?

These children are part of Romania and they have such a beautiful potential, to learn something, to be someone. 

We need politicians that can take them out of their misery, to give them opportunities, to become the people that Romania desperately needs for a better future. 

sati