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Views & Reviews

Idea of Education

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By EMN Updated: Feb 24, 2016 10:51 pm
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Vebu Khamo

I received a watsapp video of an educator from South India deliberating on “What’s wrong with our idea of education? I believe what he brought out in that one minute forty-four second clip has a lot of truth in it. Today every student dream of getting into a university but for what? Passing out exams for the sake of scoring high grades and then look-out for government jobs. That’s an average students’ dream. But how far do you think the government can provide for the nearly 1 million youths with job opportunities? Very improbable, isn’t it? It’s not helping the person or the society in the process. Without the practical application of the theoretical leanings, the knowledge gain through rote-memory amounts to zero. Therefore, education doesn’t always have to be through bookish learning (not undermining the basic knowledge of literacy here), but exemplify the idea of practical training courses that will open ample opportunities for everyone to participate in the building of a nation or society in their own capacities.Coming back to our own home, we speak about unemployed educated youth (which I would rather term it as unemployed uneducated youth) mounting every year; thousands are graduating and sitting at home playing games or entertained by visuals and audios. What kind of education is that? The visions or aim of doing something with their hands or brain is out of question. Having said that, I am not against the present schooling educational system but if education is only bound by classroom teachings, I’m not convinced at all. What we have created through dictation of notes in the classroom, and students depending on those notes to pass their degrees is nothing but null significant. It is only puffing up the pride and arrogance of the youth (nothing less) with their certificate. They assume that they are better off than those who do not study and work daily in the paddy-fields or involving in small business affairs.
We have not really imparted the skills and innovative ideas to mould the students to become an independent and self-sustaining populace which has resulted in many attaining degrees devoid of necessary proficiency in handling tools and equipments for the necessary task. What we have created through the schooling system is demeaning of those school drop-outs and branding them as failure and a headache for the family/society. I would partially agree on school drop-out becoming a menace to the society because not all school drop-outs are inefficient to work or apply skills in their professions.
Many are working tirelessly to support their families through meager honest earnings. People have a tendency to venerate the students passing their classes with good marks on their report card but I would say that studying till standard 10 and earning a livelihood through manual labor is much nobler than earning a post-graduate and relaxing at home doing nothing. Yes, we have learned to read and write but may be, not in the area of improving our mental processing and cognitive skills. We need to understand that education has to result in the application of all the academic learning in our respective vocations.
“If we don’t skill the nation, we will kill the nation,” utters the educator. Many social evils can be prevented if our idea of learning goes beyond book knowledge. The change of mindset of what true education is the need of the moment. Remember Maimonides’ quote, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” What have resulted in these years of following the old traditional system is of giving a man a fish leading to a very less amount of facilitation for the entire society. We have to teach man and woman to fish if we don’t want to feed them for lifetime.
The impartation of skills in the lives of young budding citizens has to be stalwartly encouraged and taught. The parents should be flexible in letting their children choose for themselves by firstly looking into their interest and capabilities. The trend of students jumping from one course to another is a clear sign that the students are not properly guided by their parents/guardian/teachers at home/schools. So proper career guidance and scopes should be properly taught in schools (if possible, even Sunday-schools), and not at the threshold of their crossroads. That’s too late. It should be a program provided early so that when a child grows up, he/she is not in a dilemma where/what/which profession he/she should decide.
Today, the problem in our land is not unemployment but uneducated youths who are unable to fit in with the system of administration. The root issue lies at the lack of proper guidance from the early years of a child. Therefore, unemployment is not a result of less opportunities but less capable trained individuals for the specific task. We have limited our own scopes of employment by the madness of earning degrees after degrees and at the end of the day, we’re all tired of exams after exams having to opt for permanent educated unemployed status. Hence, it is pertinent that the idea of education is broadened and widened for the next generation not to suffer the same fate we’re facing today. God bless.

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By EMN Updated: Feb 24, 2016 10:51:20 pm