I have been in the education field since 30 years running my schools in Gwalior, but still as an educator, I am in shock today ! My heart is heavy and my thoughts are in real turmoil. Before I voice my thoughts, I need to clarify one point really loud and clear that I am extremely proud of all the children in pan India who after tremendous hard work, have successfully crossed a milestone and attained excellent results in the board exams.
My question is directed towards us, the adults who are creating this confused system called “Education’. Why are we playing with the future of the children of our country? The children, who are supposed to be our hope, our aspirations, the ‘nation-makers' the 'gen next' , why are we showing them an unnecessary, impractical, impossible dream? Have we ever wondered what will happen to these bright minds when they face the stark, real, uncompromising world? The moment I give a child 100%, I destroy him/her. You are free to disagree with me but, I always feel that 100 is a kind of dead end. After this, what? So, next year, if a child or say a school wants to outdo this 100 percenters, what does it do? Will we now start a new marking scheme of 101+ etc??
I had a parent expressing her disappointment at her child’s results the other day. I had known this child since she was admitted in Playschool, she’s smart, bright and confident, so I was a little shocked to hear her mother comment my daughter hasn’t done well at all and I am really disturbed . On asking, I discovered that she had secured 96%...yes…96%..and the mother was still unhappy because she had not scored 99.4 %or 99.6% !! The girl was standing next to her with head hung down in sheer depression listening to her mothers words. See what’s happening? We are raising the unreal expectations of the parents- because now the parents know that nothing is impossible - even 100 is gettable. And we are crushing the children either way- either by giving them ridiculous marks and portraying a surreal reality which doesn’t exist or by telling them that you are not good enough. A child securing a 90% is an ‘average’ student today!!! To be very honest I had hardly ever seen what 90% looked like!! and I bet the same goes for most of the very successful people I see around me.
When you give a child a 100 in English and later when she gets a B in her college assessment paper, she becomes a nervous wreck, because, suddenly, she feels incompetent, disillusioned, useless. Many of these high scorers do not even qualify when they go in for interviews and group discussions because somewhere, while mugging up the key words for the board examinations, they lose out on speaking smartly, thinking wisely and applying their common sense. Ironical but true, when these same students will have to face an Aptitude Test or a grilling interview, these marks hardly ever come to their aid!
I love children- I love it when their eyes shine with innocent wisdom and they gutsily wait to savour every challenge of life. Children are capable of achieving great results- their strengths will always be highlighted, they will also surface to the fore front and their weaknesses can always be worked around. We do have so many subject combinations, group choices, different career options- the world is theirs to choose from. Let us stop painting an unreal picture for them, please. Let us save our children and our country. Rather than fighting over orange or green, let’s bring in a leader who can change the face of education in our country. If all of us learn to ‘think’, we get a brand new country! I know, it's easy to say but difficult to achieve- but then I believe strongly - nothing is impossible!
Disclaimer:The opinions expressed here are of the author, doesn't necessarily reflect the views of the website.
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