Views & Reviews
Education System in Search of Direction
‘The real difficulty is that people have no idea of what education truly is. We assess the value of education in the same manner as we assess the value of land or of shares in the stock-exchange market. We want to provide only such education as would enable the student to earn more. We hardly give any thought to the improvement of the character of the educated? As long as such ideas persist, there is no hope of our ever knowing the true value of education… ‘Our education has got to be revolutionized. The brain must be educated through the hand…Why do we think that the mind is everything and the hands and feet nothing? … Mere book knowledge does not interest the child so as to hold his attention fully. The brain gets weary of mere words, and the child’s mind begins to wonder’ (Mahatma Gandhi).
Eminent dangers of the education system
No Education system would be more dangerous than that education system functioning without a clear-cut State policy. It will lead to anarchy where the high bureaucrats and powerful politicians will be tempted to think of the affairs of education in their own terms and conditions. There is enough evidence which indicates that the bureaucracy totally got involved in framing education policies without involving educationists. The will alone do not transform the dead system. There is a strong support system required and collective participation.
The danger is when the entire education schemes and projects are handled by any uneducated and ignorant individual and the sustenance of its quality rests at the mercy of uneducated when the State Education system is seized by uneducated and the educationists are left alone without being consulted and thereby the transparency lost.
Ultimately, all the policy framing is left to the babus who think they know it all and that is the reason why the dealing with education management and administration becomes too bureaucratic hierarchy rather than professional. Education is driven by bureaucrats and political inclination.
Professional roles of educationists ignored
Educationists would miserably suffer from isolation in their own profession in the hands of laypersons, thereby reducing a highly professional status of education to a mere public commodity. When lawmakers choose not to make laws for education, it will be the people who will be suffering simply because we refuse to adopt any concrete policy. People will continue to cry for quality in education but they will find themselves helpless simply because there is no clear-cut state policy to outline broad directions on how the subject of Education should be handled professionally.
The whole idea of Education should be essentially originated from human growth and development, and it should be deeply rooted in the philosophy of education and in this context, it should be the educationists and the subject experts who should explain education.
India is now struggling for quality in the school education sector. Almost all the Indian School Education policies were framed by subject experts from disciplines other than school education practitioners and experts. School educationists and teachers in the country are made to implement the policies framed by persons from other disciplines. This is the reason why many of the Indian Education policies are found to be rhetoric and wishful rather than realistic and practicable. What will happen if a historian is assigned to frame policies on health and medical practices, and a medical practitioner is assigned to regulate laws for legal practitioners? A historian cannot fully realize the in-depth understanding of Education as an academic subject.
The primary source of confusion in education
The major problems in education stem from the short-sighted perception of the general public that education is an easy subject and that education subject can be handled by any individual. This is the reason why every educated person who does not have any academic background of education subject of the study claims himself/ herself to be an educationist. All the educated persons from all the subject backgrounds consider themselves as educationists. A person from Mathematics academic background fails to claim his professional role as a mathematician, a person from history background fails to claim himself to be a historian. This is the source of confusion.
Consult educationists in all matters related to policy decision making process. Education policies framed by non-educationists or laypersons are found to be the major confusion in the Education sector and they are professionally unacceptable.
Stop engaging uneducated or non-educationists to handle any education project or scheme in the state.
Teacher educators and trainers must have at least a long year of teaching experience and no fresh inexperienced people should be allowed to train teachers. Only teachers are allowed to be teacher educators and trainers. This will provide promotion opportunities for serving teachers.
All matters related to the subject matter of education should be left to educationists alone and no layperson should be allowed to talk or handle the subject matter of education as it becomes a source of confusion.
The state government should recognize the professional roles of educationists so as to avoid committing a professional crime of making all kinds of laws on education without consulting educationists.
The State Government should frame a strong and clear-cut state policy on education framed by educationists but the imposition of any state policy on education without consultation with educationists should be rejected once and for all.