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More compassion and customer service needed

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15.Jan.10

Editor: I visited a friend on Monday, January 4, 2010, at the Ministry of Education. I had to wait, and while doing so had the opportunity to chat with a teen mother who was waiting to see an education officer concerning the continuation of her school career.{{more}}

She sat with her baby (a cute little thing), along with her father, and being a regular chatterbox, I engaged her in conversation. This is what I gleaned.

The teen mom has been frequenting the Ministry of Education trying to catch an elusive SEO who always has to go out, or in some cases is in, but is writing a letter to the Minister and cannot possibly interrupt this to see anyone, teen mom included. I must mention that while I was there, the SEO in question passed and literally glared in our direction and uttered “I am off to the Grammar School for one minute.” I was later reliably informed by the teen mom that the one minute took half day. Mr. Elusive returned at midday, whereupon he made another announcement (and I am told that these are usually very loud and frequent) “I am off to the Girls’ High School.” No indication was given as to his expected time of return.

I must note here that the teen mom has been trying to see Mr. Elusive for quite some time now. On the one occasion that she managed to speak to him at the desk, she was told that she could not be seen without her parent or guardian. Utter rubbish I think, as the girl is now a mom herself, but nevertheless on the day in question, she was accompanied by her father and I am told was later joined by her mother. They camped out for the entire day waiting on Mr. Elusive. Even as I write this letter, the teen mother is still waiting to see Mr. Elusive and there is no telling how many more times she would have to pay bus fare to come to town, how many more days off work her parents would have to miss.

How many more cries of the infant would the staff have to endure, and then finally how many more frustrated members of the public will have to endure the torture by Mr. Elusive? Is this what the Education Revolution has come to? This type of behaviour is totally unacceptable. Come on Ministry officials, beef up your Customer Relations in 2010.

Observer

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