Education system and Need of educational reforms in India

The word ‘Education’ is supposed to be derived from some Latin terms ‘Educatum’, ‘Educare’ and ‘Educere’ which means ‘to teach’, ‘to take out’ and ‘to bring up’ respectively. The basic role of education is to teach, train and nourish the child with the desirable knowledge, habits, ideologies, and behavioural patterns to make him/her capable of becoming a civilized and active member of the society and the family. Education fundamentally helps the person to bring out that which is already there within. It is about emerging and manifesting the hidden talent and potential of an individual. Education is accomplished with two major parties, one is the Teacher and another is the Student. Without any of the one, education has no means. A teacher is a person who basically teaches and tries to understand the child according to his/her basic nature. A teacher tries to bring out the hidden potential of the child and polish it with his teachings. But without a student the teaching process is incomplete that is why there should be a student as well who can adopt and implement the teaching of the teacher to become a civilised person in life. Until the student does not try to imbibe the teachings of the teacher, education remains merely a word! There has to be someone to manifest and someone who can help in that manifestation. Education should not be mistaken with an academic curriculum/syllabus or a bunch of huge books rather education is a practical aspect of life. Education gives a shape to the personality of the person because it is only the education by which different civilized and humane habits and ideologies can be put into the mind of an individual. If we wish to prepare an individual as cultured and enlightened then only education can help us out in this. Therefore, education has been laid down as a System in the society.

Education and society has an interim relationship. First all of society is a cluster of People. People make the society and without the people society fundamentally cannot exist. But here what kind of people exist into that society is a matter of concern. For a proper functioning of the society, the people should be civilized, awakened, aware, and conscious. Society requires growth and advancement in order to sustain its existence and hence for this, society needs enlightened people. And it is only education which serves this purpose. That is why society gives so much of importance to the education system. Only through the medium of education system the society can prepare talented, skilled and civilized members who can assure a sustainable growth and existence of the same. Education broadens the vision of a person. It helps an individual to think in a broad way. It enables the person to judge and discriminate between right/wrong. , Ethical/unethical, authentic/unauthentic, it helps the person to learn new approaches, encourages to experiment, guides in new explorations and inspires to implement those approaches. In a society where the people are open to experiment, learn and implement, that society can automatically predict a bright future for itself. Educated members can assure a better existence and future for a society. All the advanced societies are the proof of having educated and civilized member into the same.

Education system works as a broad framework which serves the people of the society with the desirable behaviour patterns and ideologies to assure a proper functioning of it. Education system of India is divided into various levels as pre primary level, primary level, elementary education, secondary education, undergraduate and postgraduate education. The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) is the central body for providing the curriculum content for the schools in India. And different curriculum bodies like Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), Council for the India School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) and National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS) which govern the education system of Indian schools. These bodies conduct examinations among the schools and also besides this there is National University of Educational Planning and Administration (NUEPA) & National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) which are accountable for the management of education system and teachers authorization.

There is no need to absolutely terminate the present education system but there is certainly a need to reform it. And when we are talking for reformation then it is obviously required to look into the present features of the education system in India which demand changes and betterment.

NEED TO REFORM THE INDIAN EDUCATION SYSTEM

In India the education system was initially introduced by the Public/Government sector but with the time; requirements, expectations, visions and opportunities changed and hence these all gave a bright opportunity to the Private sector to get into the system and take the hold. And today the picture has entirely been changed. The private sector has totally hijacked the education system in India and has converted it into a much of a commercialized affair. The present education system is stressing upon ; “too much of Privatization of education”, “bookish excellence”, “percentage results”, “imposing of burden rather than extraction of potential”, “commercial use of knowledge”. The focuses of the system is on preparing the professionals for the society and not so much focus upon injecting moral and cultural values in the children and youth of the country. The present education system is overwhelmed with the features of commercialization and professionalism. Schools and colleges are into the race of generating IT engineers, doctors, MBAs’ and their attention has been entirely shifted from building up strong personalities for the country whose thinking and actions both reflect higher values. Education in the present time serving the purpose of earning a better livelihood, it is stressing more upon how to earn a good salary in the future, it is now more of serving the bookish knowledge only and not liberating the individual to explore the mystics of knowledge. There is a deliberate need to reform the priorities and visions of the present education system of India. Somewhere we have to decide how we shall want to utilize the actual purpose of education for the betterment of the society and few suggestions to accomplish this task are as following:

SPECIAL ATTENTION TOWARDS THE PUBLIC/GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS IN VILLAGES :

  • Infrastructure of schools need deliberate amendments: initially there were only public schools to educate the children but with the time; requirements, visions and opportunities changed hence these all gave a bright opportunity to the private sector to intervene and to take the hold. The infrastructure of public schools is the biggest drawback behind diverting the mind of the people towards the private schools.  In the urban cities even though the private sector has almost hijacked the public sector but still in the villages people cannot afford to send their children to private schools. They generally belong to the poorer families who almost seek for a free education if somehow they wish to send their children. There are about 16,000 villages whose public send their kids to the public schools. But the condition of those schools is rather worse than its description. The school buildings are not fully constructed and some schools in fact exist only in the files of the planning commission, because they were never constructed in reality. There are no proper sitting provisions, no chairs and tables to sit, no water facilities, No good sanitation provisions for children. School buildings are leaking, ceiling are dampish, no fans and even no electricity in summers. If this is the condition of the public schools then who would send their children to such schools and why? It is like a punishment for the innocent villagers which they have to tolerate if they want to educate their children. Hence, there is a desperate need to provide the children healthy and genuine atmosphere to learn and study. Children should be given proper facilities at the schools and the school buildings are half made should be finished as early as possible. Water and sanitation facilities should be made properly. It is not only the people who are disinterested in sending their kids to the schools but the pathetic infrastructure of the schools make them stop their children.
  • Appointment of Sincere Teachers in Schools: in villages not only the infrastructure but there is a teacher crisis as well. Only one or two teachers are appointed in a school to teach all the subjects to the children. The qualification of the teacher is also not been considered much when it comes to teach the village children. But here a kind attention should be given to the issue of teachers in village. Villages right now do not need a bulk of teachers but no matter the less, the teacher should be sincere, honest and responsible. He/she should be genuinely interested in teaching the village children. Most of the teachers think they do not have to do much labour with village children and they have to sit idle, but here only their actual teaching skills could be judged. How much effort they put in to educate the illiterate children and how much genuine concern does the teacher feel for the welfare of the children; is what expected here. Hence, sincere teachers should be appointed in the schools of the village that can teach the kids and make them literate for their better future.
  • A Committee to Check over the Proper Utilization of Funds and Resources: most of the times the resources and the funds which are provided by the government to the public schools are not fully utilized. The free stationery and funds should be utilized for the betterment of the infrastructure. There should be a committee over a region that keeps a hold and watch over the proper utilization of the funds and resources. There is a lot of discrepancy in the distribution of resources (school dress, stationery, food items and miscellaneous) among the children. Most of the times the resources are bagged by teachers and other workers of the schools and the children remain deprived. The committee would keep the check over the quantity of the resources and would distribute the resources through their personnel. Though this committee would have interference in the funding system of the school in that region but still this would help in following discipline and to avoid discrepancies in the distribution.

TEACHERS SHOULD BE CHOSEN AND TREATED WISELY: the selection and the appointment of a teacher should not wholly be dependent upon a successful clearance of examination but while interviewing the candidate many a thing should be considered Seriously. And once a good candidate is selected, should be treated wisely so that he/she feels motivated to teach and to utilize the teaching skills for the betterment of the children of the country. A teacher is the most vital part of education. In fact the process of education is somewhere fully dependent on the teacher because a teacher is a ‘Giver’. He is giving the knowledge, he is delegating his ideologies and skills to the student hence the selection of a teacher is a rigorous part of education. When a school and a college appoint a person as a teacher, besides the formal qualification the behaviour and thinking of the candidate also must be considered. The interview should also be as tough as the entrance exam is. Interview of the candidate can tell a lot about the personality of the person hence it should be done very carefully. It should be enough proficient to judge the calibre, patience, tolerance, empathy, and emotional intelligence of the candidate. A teacher should be calm and composed so that he/she doesn’t become a reason of stress and anxiety for a student. He should be very understanding to know the temper of the child. When the teacher fulfills his/her duties well then there is also an expectation from his side. A teacher wants good remunerations, incentives, healthy atmosphere for work, and then it is the duty of the school or college to provide all of these to the teacher to keep their enthusiasm alive.

NO SYLLABUS FOR KIDS BUT GIVE THEM VALUES TILL THE AGE OF FIVE :  a child is like a blank paper till the age of five. And till this age the mind of the child is fully developed. During this time, the learning capacity of the child is at the peak. This is the time to explore the creativity of the child and not to suppress that creativity and capacity with the burden of bookish syllabus. In play schools and kinder garden classes the child not be given any syllabus but should be taught moral values of life. Through the medium of stories and activities teacher can input the good values in the child which will actually enhance the efficiency of the children instead of making them scared of the schools and books. Not every kid is excited to go to the school at the early stage so pre-primary schools should do this change in their framework. They should introduce only and only activities whose main motive is to inject good values in the children. And once this foundation is laid down there is no doubt that those children would become better human beings in comparison to others. They would do definitely better than other because the seed of morality are already sown into their minds.

COUNSELLER SHOULD BE MANDATORY FOR EVERY SCHOOL AND COLLEGE : day by day education system is becoming harsh for the student. There is so much of competition being spread among the children and youth. Every child wants to come first in the class and moreover there is a pressure coming from the school/colleges and teachers which make the student anxious. They feel like securing the highest marks is the only motive of their lives. Students are negatively encouraged to secure highest marks not in the class but in inter-schools/colleges/university as well which ultimately makes them frustrated at times. They feel nervous and weak. They cannot disrespect their teachers and also cannot annoy their parents and when they fail to achieve the target they become so much disappointed that they do not take a second to commit the most inhumane act; suicide. Therefore there should be a person to counsel them at the time of facing that competition and to take care of them at the time of the failures. A counsellor is the person who can do this task at best. There should be a person whom the student can share their feelings with. If they are facing any kind of emotional disturbance, any frustration or any negative emotion they are facing, then they can definitely come to that counsellor to talk and share. Here the counsellor would listen and suggest the child the best solution and hence the chances of many unwanted circumstances can be avoided.

TECHNOLOGY MAKES THE THINGS EASY FOR BOTH TEACHER AND THE STUDENT :  Undoubtedly technology can make the education process simple and interesting for the teacher and the student both.  Many things can be made simpler with the use of digital communication and teaching. In abroad the lectures in schools and colleges are given through computers and laptops which help the child to keep a bulk of information always stored with him/her. And also helps the teachers to remember many things at a time. Indian schools and colleges should also introduce such digital teaching in the classrooms. The checking of the exam sheets should be digital. This would reduce the chance of any biasness from the side of a teacher. Networking helps in connecting numerous of people at a time here the teachers can guide the students and can make them aware of the plus and minus of this technology.
SEX EDUCATION SHOULD NOT BE IGNORED AT THE SCHOOL LEVEL:  in our Indian education system the knowledge which should be given with utmost care and attention is the sex education but ironically it is the major neglected part of the Indian education system. Most often the chapters of the science textbooks which discuss about the sex life and the biological nature of the human being are simply neglected and knowingly left out by the teachers. Teachers feel hesitation in discussing those chapters and especially in the co-ed school. But this kind of attitude of teachers leaves the students perplexed and curious. Their curiosity should be entertained at that very moment by the teachers. Teacher should not feel any shame and hesitation in discussing sex knowledge rather they should encourage the student to talk about it and to have an open discussion in the classroom. So that every single curiosity gets an answer for itself. Teachers should also organize classroom discussions and project programmes on sex issue and should clarify each and every point related to the issue. There are so many biological changes take place in adolescents and teenagers which they feel shy to discuss with anyone. So while discussing the sex issues a teacher should make the student comfy to ask any query related to his/her biological changes and other sex related matters as well.
ADDITION OF SPIRITUAL CLASSES IN SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES: the main purpose of education is to make a person broad minded, foresighted, skilled, enlightened and aware. Its basic purpose to inject moral values in the person to make him a civilised member of the society. And here Spirituality may help a person to accomplish this task very easily. Spirituality is the art of living; it is the art of exploring and knowing the reality of one’s self. Thereby if a person is able to realize his/herself first then the manifestation of his thinking and action would automatically be moral and divine. Therefore children and the youth should be introduced with the teaching so spirituality during their education period. They should be introduced to meditation techniques as well so that they can realise the peace and happiness within themselves. Spiritual teachings would enable them to clarify their confusions, myths and many unsolved queries. The student should be free to choose any one time to go in the spiritual class during the school time. Student can meditate, relax, talk and share with the instructor during that time. Addition of spiritual classes would definitely show positive results on the students and would help them to imbibe the education in well manner.

Indian education system needs to be reformed because somewhere down the line it is now distracting from its main purpose. Its focus has been changed entirely. The purpose of education is to impart the knowledge and the purpose of knowledge is to Liberate not to Bind. Education system of India was formed with a vision of generating great personalities for the country who can contribute for the betterment and growth of the society and the nation. But India is still at the third among the illiterate countries. Only a better education system can assure a sustainable growth of the country in a long run. Indian education system is lacking in imbibing knowledge and succeeding in providing skills. Skills can be learnt at any time but if knowledge is not provided at the right time it leaves a person with regrets.

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