=Teenager jumps of the fifth floor terrace and kills self – reason he failed in Chemistry.. = Class ten girl comes from examination hall home, walks straight to her room and bolt from inside and kills herself…reason she assumed her score wont measure upto…
These are news articles one come across in the morning papers of late; meaning last two decades or so.
What brings the question, what is the real idea of education? As we were explained or driven, it is to teach & develop a human being through its mind so as to make it behave in an ideal way meaning righteous thoughts, mannerisms, understanding of issues/subject analyse and decide to act.
The reality, however, is far from this and is scary as well. The current state of education in our country is so deplorable that people have to look for alternate ways to impart meaningful education to the kids. The formal system of education has proved almost worthless – primarily because the original system has been tampered with since more than two /three centuries by successive invaders (Govts.). They had the political agenda of breaking the country’s ethos, making the population dependent on these west driven curriculum and agenda thereby making them susceptible to adopting anything imposed on them in the name of development/superstitions/religious freedom etc., but none apprehended a hidden agenda of comprehensive brain washing of generations to come through this new found education system.
Lowering strength of the human asset of this country that was once proud of this country is in debate too.
The factors leading up to this are many as I look at it:
Parallel to the real world
The current , formal, system of education do not give any knowledge that will work for them when they are to encounter different situations.
The problems that the kids are taught today are ones that they will never ever actually face in the real world. With the change in the way people look at life today, formal education seems almost unnecessary because of its sheer pointlessness. The teacher talk to the kids about history when none of them know the current political scenario in which they have to live in. Are we so naive to think this history will do them any good? all these nonsense talks when the kids at the very tiny age are not properly taught of the mannerisms and civic sense.
Deterioration in the quality of education begin from the quality of teachers. Though I still firmly believe that till the age of 5 children should be allowed to learn from what they hear from their near and dear ones and from what they see around them. Then only schooling should start. But now, at a tender age of 2 years, when a kid starts going to school, his teacher is the first person that he/she looks up to. The kids are highly impressionable and start following the teacher; teachers who are more commercially inclined than emotionally attached to the children in moulding good all round citizens. They don’t care about the standard of education that they part with probably because many of today’s teachers too came through the same system. My observation could be wrong in certain cases, but most of the classrooms in our country don’t even see a teacher in a daily basis. mind it I am not talking here about the paid schools of the cities, but about this schools that carries 60 percentage of the kids in the rural and semi urban india.
The curriculum is, by and large, static for ages leaving small changes here and there and that too effected by some political appointees. Many of such appointees are not fully integrated within themselves with the cultural and historical past of the country vis-a-vis the evolving order of the country/world. So, when the designers and teachers themselves are not in sync with changing order, what can the current generation get from schools. This is a major mismatch that makes the kids interested in only percentage scores rather than “learning” something taught in the classroom.
Our country has lot and lot to give to the kids than all other countries put together in every sphere of education; we have to make it more palatable to the current breed through perfect designing of curriculum keeping in mind the development of the minds of the new generation. With latest technology what can not be done to revolutionise formal education? Why are we bent upon aping the west who are worst in any topic you take….
Through a well designed exposure we can give the kids a thorough and in-depth knowledge of our own country, with peripheral knowledge of other world order. Look at the current successful leaders of admin/business/politics anything, none of them sacrificed their childhood. It is important for the kids to know about their country, but it is even more important for the kid to know about the world. At the end of the day, our kids will one day compete at the global level and they should be prepared for that.
Last but not the least, do not force 100 things into a small brain in the name of competitiveness. Every Child need not be good in academics. Each one comes with a talent that is not similar to the fellow child. Talent varies from person to person. Means, there should be flexibility in the quality of education and kids should have the option of picking and choosing based on his/her talent and taste. If a kid is genuinely not interested in academics and he/she is bent towards art, then let them opt it as full time and rest for minimum general knowledge.
Let the kids not see education as life imprisonment or a mechanical equipment to score, score and score; make them look at it as a tool to nourish, polish and bring out the best person that one is and also to help them bring the human in them.
Education is not to display the competition that cultivate only enemity among kids right from the tiny age and that should not be national aim. Rather rewind the system by a century or so, and allow an atmosphere for the kids to bloom to human beings first and then qualified human beings.
Let’s change what education has become over the time and take it back to what it was originally supposed to be. An open stage to learn and showcase knowledge. Let’s not make it a competition. Let’s even not make it a venue for young lives to terminate themselves.
Madhu K. Nair 23rd of February 2017
(I might have visited at least 400 or more schools from interiors of cities in various parts of the country.)