A Fractured Education System

Engineer. Doctor. MBA. CA. The designations and the corresponding degrees don’t make anyone much excited or proud nowadays. Because in more than 80% of the cases, regarding a student’s profession, you would be getting one of these three answers. The rest 20% may turn up with some or other variant of these courses.

According to a recent survey of  Programme for International Student Assessment(PISA) conducted annually to evaluate education systems worldwide by the OECD(Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Secretariat., India ranks last 2nd  in the world. Beating Kyrgyzstan.

Since last 5 years I have been associated with various facets of Indian Education System. Firstly and more importantly – As A Student, preparing for getting into a job, watching people preparing for Management Exams(many of whom in fact can’t manage themselves) and higher education, a Trainer for Higher Secondary Science Students,  and guiding one of the Primary School Student. I emphasized `As A Student` because that gives the answer to most of the topics discussed in this article. I discuss various loopholes in the system. Maybe everyone is aware of all these facts. But the problem is to find where and how to find the solution for this fracture in the education system.

I respect some of the achievements and progress made by few of the exceptional educational institutes from various backgrounds ranging from IIMs to IITs to NID. But hereby I will be talking about more general cases prevalent in the system. The qualificational details in the article would be more inclined towards engineering backgrounds.

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1. A Weak and Stereotype Primary Schooling :

Schooling is ought to be the base of what kind of person a student grows into. But sadly, schooling, like any other education system in India, has become a matter of business. There are comparatively very few government run schools which stand upto the required standard. I appreciate the initiatives taken by the government for improving the education and literacy base, but the implementation is targeted towards imparting basic and primary knowledge. Of course, managing to provide a world class schooling to every student is not feasible for govt too. Tuition based learning and lack of practical implementations have proved to be a major fracture point in the system. I have seen few live cases of how the government run schools in villages are operating and surely they would not take the level anywhere except providing a result certificate. Schooling is still majorly following the pattern of mugging up stories and vomit in the papers as much as you can. Hardly any appreciation is made for the students who want to pursue a out-of-normal career like Music, Gaming, Art, ect.

I have seen some schools coming up with the so-called real schooling but looking at the fee structures of lakhs I would consider them so-called for-above-middle-class-schooling making it accessible to a very few % of them.

2. Higher Secondary Cast System: Science Commerce Arts

The higher secondary studies are looked upon as some caste based system. The Science forming the Brahmin Class, The Commerce – the Kshatriyas and Arts – The Sevaks.  Most of the students, say 98% don’t have any practical knowledge of respective branches. Run for IIT, AIEEE and if both of them don’t work State Boards. Many of the decisions are influenced by family so in this case I don’t blame the students. One of the funniest reasons I am hearing nowadays is to pursue MBA. 🙂

I think the neighbors become more concerned of your studies than the students. I regret how a stream called Arts can be so demotivated. Commerce is considered more of a hangout stream.

3. The Race Begins: Mission Graduate Degree

Getting into a good graduate program is Imp. Or say Most Imp(*). Because this is the point which decides your career. A good degree – your life is kind of settled. And a bad degree and you end up being an engineer, who after 4 years of hard work ends up working in a call center at 8,000 p.m. + additional incentives or to join your family business and calling yourself an entrepreneur.

But getting into a degree program is not as such a hard task even. Probably every businessman with some good investment in pocket has some or the other- Engineering MBA Medical- college opened for convenience. Recently I read the novel Revolution 2020 by Bhagat and came to know few more in-facts of this education industry.

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Government also, cannot be completely blamed for this. The reason being – they are allowing set up of these institutes to increase the overall education level of the country. Also managing crores of students and thousands of schools, colleges and institutes is not an easy task. State based education board systems have made the education – as a nation – weak. Decentralized organization of these institutes, untrained teachers, monetary business sense based activities have resulted in a chaos in education system.

So, the point is whom to blame for this? The schools, teachers, tuitions, entrance exam patterns, selection criteria, education businessman, government or the student caught in the middle of these all ??