Among the stories from the South and SE Asian tsunami catastrophes, there are some of the “We’re survived only because So’n’so was with us” genre …
Hundreds of people owe their lives to the fact that an 11-year-old schoolgirl was fortunate enough to attend a school which still taught geography, instead of the current fad for the ideologically-raddled, content-free SoSE courses which take up time and space in so many schools.
This link tells the story:
To forestall predictable howls of outrage about “cramming young people’s minds with useless facts instead of teaching them how to think”, consider this: the dichotomy referred to is a very false one – it is entirely feasible for schools to teach culturally significant knowledge AND to “teach students to think” at the same time. It is not an either/or, gum-chewing or walking thing at all.
Full marks to Andrew Kearney – sounds like my kind of teacher. And an Asian elephant stamp for schoolgirl Tilly.