Like the Pink Floyd song “Another Brick In The Wall” the Indian education system produces graduates who are almost similar in their skills and thought processes. There are several problems that affect the system including the non enforcement of compulsory education, the lack of the reach of good education and the expectations of the students from education.
In India everybody wants to become an engineer or a doctor sometimes the decision is made by them and sometimes the decision is made for them. A decision made by an impressionable teenager would more often than not be something that would look cool in the eyes of his peers and elders. This leads to the rush for admission to several engineering colleges in the country. And having chosen engineering as their profession these teenagers also have to select the stream to specialize in – again the choice is made with job prospects and coolness factor in mind and this leads to a glut of software and electrical engineers while traditional streams like civil and mechanical suffer. Throughout this process very little thought actually goes into deciding if the young man actually likes any of what he is doing.
Before this farce of engineering college is another tedious period through school. In most of the schools, students are forced and pressurized into memorizing every last bit of detail in the books so that the schools can continue advertising their 100% success rate and attract more students. Most of the students who graduate from schools have little or no knowledge what they actually learnt. Alternatives like Sports and Cultural activities are given very little attention. The students are conditioned to believe that they matter very little leaving us with a nation of talented people not pursuing their interests.
The other serious issue is the reach of our education program – providing quality education to the masses. Only when this happens can the Bharat out there be connected to the India we all know. Actual enforcement of the compulsory education is very low leading to several kids missing out on education year on year which gives no way to climb out of their poverty. Even those kids who manage to go to school don’t get a good education as the teachers at the government schools do not take much interest in the actual education that happens in the class.
How can we solve this? a large-scale revamping of our primary education is in class. To provide a wholesome education that includes sports, cultural and scholarly aspects should be designed. The government should promote inter-school activities on a nationwide scale so that these extracurricular activities get due importance. Apart from this we can leverage our Internet and Communication Technologies(ICT) to deliver quality education to the rural areas and the rural government agencies should be made responsible for ensuring that the compulsory education is actually enforced in the last mile. The arts and sciences should be promoted on an equal scale to engineering and medicine so that people realize the importance of these streams too.
How would this help our society? Education is the primary tool with which anyone can access the employment opportunities and personal betterment. It is the solution to the age old caste and religious divisions that exist between various groups in the country. An educated person and someone who contributes economically to the society would only add to the society as a whole.
Praveen Kumar Desabandu
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