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The quality of our relationships with the world is very well estimated by the yardstick of trust: we can be a trustworthy person, we can trust and also have trust, in ourselves and in others. To be, to do and to have, the three fundamental verbs.

In education, trust plays out at all levels: trust or not in one's abilities, trust in the value of the content, in the teaching method, in the teacher, in the institution, in the facilities, etc. The teacher may have confidence in his or her students, his or her administration, in what he or she is teaching, and even in the system. The principal may have confidence in his or her staff, in his or her policy...

Trust is built, developed, affirmed as it crumbles, evaporates or collapses more or less quickly. Regaining it then requires much more effort than not having lost it in the first place. Some people demand trust without understanding its nature: it is a quality of relationship that develops, that is lived, that generates an atmosphere. It has no material quality and cannot be guaranteed, accumulated or exchanged; even the most sophisticated systems of certification can be misused. Justice can be trusted, but it must correspond to the truth. A person can be trusted if his actions reflect his thinking. One can even trust one's own judgment as long as one is not too often mistaken. One can also trust one's watch if it keeps time correctly.

All the recipes for abusing trust can be considered from the point of view of distrust, the one that one puts to sleep.  Hades put his trust in Cerberus, his three-headed dog, of which always at least one did not sleep. Vigilance becomes a criterion of confidence in the face of false diplomas, bogus courses, cheating in exams, etc. The teacher, the employer and the student learn to detect them. How do we manage trust on the Internet? At a distance, trust is the only thing we can rely on, so we go gradually. You had to trust to buy something on the Internet the first time. In distance learning, we trust in the same way: a course must deliver what it advertises, the reputation of the one offering it is at stake.

We value the trust that is placed in us, our integrity is its guardian. The same is true of self-confidence: no one but ourselves can give it to us.

Denys Lamontagne - [email protected]

Illustraton: orlaimagen - DepositPhotos

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