Rantings: Indian Education03 Feb 2012
The Indian education system has been one with many ups and downs. Viewing from not an expert's position, not from a parent's position, not from a teacher's position, but from a high school, bored student's perspective, this post is just a rant about our muddled education system.
CCE: This was supposed to be the next big thing to do away with exams. However, the government's magic wand failed to do much on these counts, and instead of doing away with exams, it succeeded to give us a cornucopia of projects and assignments, to keep us busy in our already syncopated free time. It probably could've done a lot more if they had revised their assessment, but…..
Emphasis on exams: What the education board has largely taught the majority of Indian students is that failure in exams is tantamount to failure in life. It screams to say that exams are the most important thing that could have happened since the Big Bang, and that failing could just as well result in the destruction of the universe itself. It would be an understatement to say that "10th graders in India suicide", because the existence threatening virus has got to almost all age groups. For the sake of lives, try to change these stereotypes, CBSE.
Lack of thinking problems: OK, I know what my fellow students are thinking on these counts in math (no pun intended), but problems like these are reserved for "higher classes". It's like slowly walking on a long path and then being forced to run a marathon. Yeah, these problems can't be left out early for the benefit of the "average student". Sure, it is tough going early, but it will pay off in the end. The bar of the "average student" needs to be raised a notch higher on the metaphoric ladder.
If you want more evidence, just look at India's IMO (International Mathematics Olympiad) rating of 72nd out of 73 countries. An average South Korea's 3rd grader is astonishingly just as good as an average Indian 8th grader at mathematical/mental ability.
Hindi: As if the subject wasn't terrifying enough, some wise guy decided to give kids 15 chapters of boredom and then ask arbitrary questions in exams. With themes ranging from dirt, mud and random biographies, the Hindi syllabus clearly wasn't reviewed by a person brought up in a ubiquitous English community. If CBSE can reduce the bar so nonchalantly for sciences, why was this treatment skipped for Hindi?
Uniformed board: This probably saves a lot of confusion, but it means that it needs to cater to all types of society for what the board considers "relevant". Things like forestry and agriculture are hardly needed in urban areas, but then again, this is according to me, not them.
Policies: Read plural of policy and not law enforcing officers. RTE plans to give education to everyone, which sounds like a nice idea, but in reality is far-fetched. With most 3rd graders failing to pass basic English reading tests (94% to be exact), something seems to be wrong. Even if they somehow do get everyone educated, not everyone can get a job in this country, leaving lots of wasted talent.
On a more positive note, literacy rates have jumped by over 12% since 2001's census. Great news, but these shortcomings give one some food for thought.
Comment, criticise and praise at your own will.