Catch them young!

The most important period in a person’s life is the time when he is a student. That too a school student. A school education marks the initial phase of the molding of the intellect and the inculcation of values and skills that define tomorrow’s leaders. But are we up to the mark now?

Recently there have been reports in the papers of teachers meting out punishments to students on trifling matters. Some times the punishments are hard to the extend to cause severe mental agony and leading to psychological problems. Who is to blame? The teacher or the student? Or both?

This point was driven home by the film Taare Zameen Par. The story of a talented dyslexic student who remains in the shadows until a teacher coaxes him out to fame and recognition. How many more talented children are there out who are not recognized properly or are neglected due to lack of time? Are we chasing too much that we are neglecting the true purpose of that chase?

Today’s education system especially the school education system is in shambles with the old values and the teacher-student bond thrown out to the air. Profit is the motto with schools competing with each other offering ‘services’ and demanding exorbitant fees as a reward. I am not including those who are genuine in giving the students a committed, value based education.

Today’s teacher has no time to listen to his/her students’ doubts. He has to finish off the portions, make sure that the entire batch passes out, never mind if they got it right or not. This mentality has grown to such an extend that it has affected the students themselves as they are more shrewd than their teachers in taking the ‘right’ steps in passing out.

As a result, these not so practically applicable mind sets of people enter college and face trouble in grasping the next level concepts. Mostly it is the case of peer pressure of parental forcing that a student takes a particular subject in college. There are very few who venture out to study their heart’s desire but are ridiculed.

And why not will there be a dip in the number of employable students? How many students today relish their school days? How many continue to broaden their mind by constant education? How many research scholars are there? The parents are equally to blame as they do not listen to their wards and encourage them in their are of talent. Let alone encourage them to read. Reading helps in developing the imagination. It also develops problem solving skills as we  are able to analyze a problem in all aspects and come at a solution.

This must change. Right from school. We are touted to be the next intellectual beacon to the world. The present condition doesn’t add up to that reputation.

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