Following a recent spate of delinquencies and crimes involving juveniles that have raised public concern for the nation’s education system, a vocational high school in Greater Kaohsuing is stepping up efforts to fortify the moral character of young students.
Last month, a 22-year-old drunk driver, dubbed by the public as “Master Yeh (葉少爺),” caused three deaths and orphaned an eight-year-old girl. Earlier this month, a group of young people nicknamed the “excrement youths (糞青)” filmed themselves pouring urine and excrement on sleeping homeless people. Both incidents have caused widespread public uproar.
In view of such reprehensible conduct by young people, Chung Shan Industrial and Commercial School (CSICS) in Greater Kaohsuing launched an unmanned charity store on campus on Friday, in bid to enforce students’ moral education.
Under the charity scheme, students and faculty members can donate their treasured items, such as handmade artworks, books and dolls, which are priced by the contributor. Prices are generally 70 percent lower than their market prices.
“This is a charity shop instead of a flea market, so the school is encouraging students to donate items they are fond of, instead of giving away unwanted used goods. Students who wish to purchase a product only need to put in the exact amount of the marked price into a cashbox,” CSICS president Chen Kuo-ching (陳國清) said.
The total profits from the charity shop will be put in the school’s special account for education, which will provide financial assistance to students from low-income households to help them complete their education, Chen said.
Asked if the school would discipline any “dishonest” students at the shop, Chen stressed that the charity store is aimed at strengthening students’ ethics, not to entrap them misbehaving.
However, Chen added that the school would give private counseling to students who were found cheating.
“This is an integral part of education. So if donated goods are running out, the school will allocate a special budget rather than having students in charge of the store chip in,” Chen said.
Translated by Stacy Hsu, staff writer