Reforming Education Part 1: Food for Thought on Teachers Day!

Marva Collins once said, “Don’t try to fix the students, fix ourselves first.  The good teacher makes the poor student good and the good student superior.  When our students fail, we, as teachers, too, have failed.”

Teachers_PrayerThe parallel and commercial education in the form of tuitions and coaching has made deep inroads in our education system and is really detrimental for the future of the youth and nation. I still remember my school and engineering days when we use to rely heavily on the coaching given by some renowned teachers from various colleges as private tuitions for which they charged a handsome amount. The attendance at school and college was merely for fun and getting admit card to sit in examination. The professors and teachers were also aware of this attitude of students and they will also teach during lectures for the sake of it. Very few teachers showed the interest in making their students learn.

This is where a student coming from a economically backward section looses out and eventually hampering his growth as an individual and professionally. Moreover, majority of the students who go to private classes also succeed by rote learning and not understanding of the concepts. Due to this reason majority of our graduates are considered unemployable by the industry. The practical application of the concepts has taken a back stage and the success merely depends on the “guess papers”. Even Narayan Murthy has said that IITs are no longer the quality institutions they were in the 60s and 70s. Stating that the IITs and IIMs have had very few world-class researches coming out of them in the decade gone by, he said, “In 2004, China produced 2,652 PhDs in computer science and in that year the figure was 24 in our country. Attributing the drop in the high standards of IITs to the boom in the number of coaching classes for joint entrance examinations, he said, “Today, students prepare hard for a year solving sample questions for IIT-JEE. One of these samples matches in the entrance examination and they crack the test.”

This is perhaps the biggest drawback of this commercial education where education has become a business and is looked upon as a “golden egg laying hen”. Historically imparting education was considered as most pious and noble profession, but over the period, this system too has got influenced by commercialization and now teaching is no longer a profession of dedication and devotion towards building better people and country; it is all about money and status.

At this point, I would like to ask the teachers,

  • Is it correct on their part morally? I believe that most of the teachers choose this profession because teachers hold the candle of enlightenment, knowledge and prosperity. And if the money lures you away from your duty then the very meaning of word teacher diminishes.
  • Why is it that a teacher who takes so much effort and pain in private classes doesn’t show that much interest while delivering lecture in colleges and schools?
  • Isn’t a failure on your part if a student has to join private classes to succeed?
  • As a morally responsible teacher, aren’t you playing with future of our nation for the sake of money?

My respected teachers whatever India will be in the next generation will depend upon what you do to your students today in the classrooms!!!!

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