Education – Where Is The Mouth Of This River?

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Another human born? Bravo! Another member on these boats, sailing on the water of this river. This river, that of education and apparently knowledge as well, is heading somewhere we must believe. Where though exactly, nobody knows. Well, the point here is quite simple. Of all the basic needs a human requires, education today is not absent from the list. Infact it is climbing the steps of this priority ladder, and no doubts,  it should. But the problem here is that of accommodation. That of seats in these boats, and that of the direction of this river.that of what these waters comprise of. Even today, after almost 68 years of our Constitution being implemented and more specifically after 8 years of the Right To Education being made a fundamental right, education remains highly impassable. the reports released by the ministry of HRD( HumanResource Development) point out that still 8.1 million children in the age group 6 to 14 remain out of schools and there’s a shortage of 508,000 teachers country-wide. The ones having the privilege of being seated on these boats, sailing on the river of education, are in no pleasant situation as well. The river is highly polluted, salted and shallow! Meaning to say, that our education system is having many loopholes.

Digging deep into this issue, the reasons that arise are of no surprise. But what is surprising is the ignorance yielded out to these reasons. The “State v/s Private School” battle continues. Where the former fails to be present in adequate numbers, providing quality education, and the mere presence of teachers as well, the latter is out of the reach of majority of the population , be it because of the lumpsum fees amounts they charge or because of limited seats that they have and wish to give to only the children belonging to the so-called elite or middle class . This battle results in the loss of none the two parties in the forefront, but that of the two other parties, the students, and the parents! Where such is the state of elementary and secondary education in our country, higher education is a complete paradox and an irony in itself.  Remember the new human that was born?Well, that human somehow managed to get a seat in the boat of elementary education, and secondary education,  but now is almost drowning in the water as he is without a seat in the boat of higher education! There are more candidates than the positions you see ! and yes it doesn’t stop there. Out of those seats as well, most are reserved for the so-called underprivileged. Our system does not aim at providing basic education to the so-called ‘scheduled castes’, but all of a sudden when they grow up, our state feels that they must be given a chance to come at par with all the classes preceding them on the ladder. Does this not sound hollow. It is as if expecting the candidates to cross half of this river somehow on there own,  and making arrangements for them later in the stride. The fact is as simple, the ones getting the opportunity of decent elementary and secondary education, lack even the chance of getting the higher education, at least on the part of the state. And the ones who have to struggle hard for their basic education, have guaranteed seats in the boats of higher education, even if some others, maybe more deserving, more capable, more hardworking and diligent, are out there waiting. Also, pondering further one may rise with the question of how worthy, how sensible, logical and how practically updated is the education provided. Is the bookish knowledge, taught in the absence of the light of reason and logic, with no idea in this distant world as to how that knowledge is of practical use, sufficient? Even after 15 years of education, a graduate still stands as blank to face the outer world as a young student might.  Such is the plight of our education system . Education is of prime importance in a person’s life. Justified. Your economic background decides the accessibility, standard and duration of your basic education. Not justified. You belong to a middle class or an upper-class family, great, you belong to a lower class family, good time struggling! Done with your primary and secondary education?  Want to get a government college? Belong to the lower class? great! Belong to the middle or upper class? Hard time struggling! Done with your graduation? Ready to face the practical world? Well, no! The point of devoting almost 21 years of your life for being educated and ending up with nothing but forgotten history dates, mugged up mathematical formulae, memorized social science answers or robotic implementation of accounting, well that is what education is in our country dear! Bravo, another human caught in the trap!

Better late than never! Looking at the possible solutions, small and big steps together on the part of all parties concerned, the state, private schools, parents, teachers, and students as well , can together bring about the necessary changes and still modify and rectify our education system and make education a very subtle , natural and enlightening experience . Because as Albert Einstein rightly said, “ Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think”. Rebuilding our education model, that is making education’s accessibility a very general and equal opportunity, for all classes and at all stages. Rectifying the core content of what we call education. It does not imply to completely do away with the bookish knowledge or stop evaluating students on the basis of their academic performance, but that giving a flavor of practicality to what is being taught, what is the world ahead of them beholding for them, and this is very much necessary at the higher education stage. Construct adequate numbers of educational institutions, be it schools or colleges and universities, make education feasible, appoint competent teachers, train them from time to time in order to be updated with current changes. Aiming to make education a more holistic journey than a monotonous travel on the same age-old routes. Giving extracurricular skills and activities of equal importance. This will all train the raw kids and unpolished teenagers, for where the mouth of this river is, the outer world!

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