School Education – changing scenario One wonders why so much of hype is created over the different patterns of education

and changes and modifications that are brought out in the present school curriculum. To be very precise, nothing is new and this is the outcome of academicians and the demand of the present competitive world working together for the past two decades to wrought out a solution to better the prevalent system. It has been a continuous process and this thought process will definitely help the youngsters acquire education in a more fruitful manner. So far education meant the academic learning and excelling in three R’s. But today educators have started looking beyond this limit. Excellence in academics, scoring good marks, getting a good rank, topping a list will continue to hold good in times to come; but these are not the only objectives of schooling. Real time examples have shown that while such students who excel in academics have become successful, there are many others in the lower rung climb up to the top. Hence, success doesn’t confine to examinations and top results. A child’s performance cannot just be decided by these limited hours of examinations. How does one account for the numerous hours of one’s learning, experiencing and hard work in his schooling? How can one pronounce the judgment without taking all these painful hours of one’s schooling? Each minute of schooling by a child has attributed to its growth. All are born to live In a civilized world, the society has to provide means and methods to help every one survive with dignity. All the same, it is of paramount importance to a school to nurture a child into a worthy, self reliant citizen. Isolating one for the mere reason that he or she is not able to perform certain tasks set by a vague system is not justified. Therefore, schools must aim to be positive is showing the right path to the student to live and not just to exist in the world. Areas other than academics – their importance There are many facets of learning in one’s life. Ancient education system insisted on learning Vedas, skills of hunting, warfare and other rudimentary pedagogy. I was limited to an affordable few. As time passed we have come up to this level of education where every one gets a chance. Right to education up to an age of 14 is the recent commitment by our constitution to realize this dream. In the modern scenario a myth has been created that only the toppers succeed and others are drop outs. This jinx on slow learners has to be broken. There are many more skills that can be learned by a student in school life. These skills can prove to be a boon in the long run.

The following areas can form a checklist of such skills and areas that can be encouraged in a student. Good schools offer many of them. Quiz, Debate, Magazine, Art, Creative writing, Drama, Music, Dance, Cultural Events, Event organization, Competitive exams., Science Models, Projects, Maths Lab, Computer related creative work, Robotics, Internet expertise, Home Science, Decoration, Flower Arrangement, Indoor games etc. Competitions The next question arises of the competitions in various levels. Do these competitions discourage the less competitive ones? If they are taken in the right perspective, they will add up to one’s personality. Competitions are inherent part of one’s life. In this world of cut-throat competition, one should live through it rather than shirk it. School life is the best to try out one’s strength. Competitive spirit with killer instinct gives a moral boost. But when one faces some set backs, he shouldn’t falter to deter his steps. There is always another chance to try. It is a matter of individual capacity rather than what the parents or the others want. It is the duty of the school to fine tune the attitude of the child. Peer Group How do we know if one is competitive enough? The best place is the school as you have well set peer group formed over there. When we talk about a peer group, we can term it as a class, section, group, House or any other division made in a school. The category is usually made of age groups and other similar level students. Working in a peer group gives a child great advantage in the learning process. This is one of the reasons that a child gets the best out of school life. Learning at home and acquiring all bookish knowledge without going to a school is possible but the child doing so is deprived of the exposure to a peer group which can never be compensated. A good school provides the optimum opportunity for a student. Value Education We need to impart value education to a child. Value Education in a school makes the process a complete one. The two points to be noted while inculcating value education are: 1. Life value or moral value that one imbibes through a very positive approach. A well experienced and good teacher teaches his children the values that are most important in one’s life. This is not done only through a special subject. The very objective of a good school is to work towards value based education to the youngsters. Our rich heritage, culture,

religion, past history, success stories of great personalities and life time examples can serve this objective 2. Education that will give a value to the real life can also be termed as Value Education. Or in other words education should be valuable for practical life. A student should not learn things only for the sake of examinations. The theories of science, maths and other subjects should be applied for his future life rather than being only for theoretical knowledge. Rote memory and learning without understanding will hinder the process of education. The right attitude – broad mindedness and ready to be flexible Education should be unconditional. The sky is the limit when you learn. There is no age bar to learning. The subjects, syllabus, text books etc are only minimum guidelines to foster education to a child. The system should be flexible and ready to adapt to the advancing technology. English Medium As the objective is to acquire vast knowledge, one should not grudge taking up any medium of instruction. Incidentally, today English is the medium of learning for most advanced studies. Accept it and take it a challenge to go ahead with it until the time is ripe for any other convenient medium to take charge. Education is not a past time or waste time – it is an investment Today education is not just a past time or time spent wastefully. We should realize the importance of education for the younger generation for the betterment of our country. Every paise spent on your child’s education is a life time investment. As Indian Citizens we need to uphold the cultural values of Indian heritage We are proud to be Indians and in the present global competitive environment we need to prove our mettle in the most competent manner. At the same time, we need to preserve our identity and uphold our cultural heritage. We are from the land of Mahatma Gandhi who has paved way for non violence and the philosophy of ‘simple living and high thinking’. One can take an Indian out of India; but no one can take India out of an Indian. I Augustine Anbananthan Principal Jain Public School, Barnagar.

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