The changing face of Education
Recently noted Tamil literati and writer Pavannan, in one of his article had shared his experience. He on one of his, over eight hour, train journeys happened to me reading a big book. A middle aged man who traveled next to him in the same compartment was watching him going on with his pensive reading, non-stop. Soon, driven by curiosity, the man enquired the writer whether he was preparing for a competitive exam. Pavannan casually replied that he wasn’t doing what the other man guessed but was reading a novel.
The questioner was utterly surprised by his reply. Unable to subjugate his surprise he further asked him, “Sir after all it’s just a novel, a story. Why should you be reading this so seriously”. Baffled writer responded, “Sir this novel reveals a take on human life. It teaches me with a dimension of life that I’ve never known of and it offers me a chance to experience a slice of life”. The reply, though, didn’t seem to have satisfied the man.
The writer observes that such reactions are most common among people recently. This is mainly due to a paradigm shift in the perception of education amid people. Education is considered as a mean to shape up a human being and nurturing him with values to become a good human being and to be productive to the societal well being on the whole. Sadly such point of views is considered obsolete. The idea of education has lately changed from its core.
Education is now just seen as the gateway to grab a dream job offering a salary in five digits. This is an important outcome of the changing human perception on life post globalization. To majority of youth who were brought up in this era, values mean…. bull shit! They dream about joining an educational institution that promises them of a fantastic job opportunity. Sadly the parents also care just about this and are least bothered about the values that the institution imbibes in their kids.
Education system that morphed into an industry during the same time has managed to equip itself to offer only what is sort after by the public. Value based education system is now history. What we have right now is an education system that values, marks over character formation and credits and academic achievements over values. Education stream is almost completely industrialized, where the target is to manufacture a pupil with top scores and place him in a lucrative job. Parent’s attitude has too changed by and large. They want their children to score more and their character formation is not much cared about.
In the recent decades the Indian educational system which had a great legacy for its value based and life oriented education has lost it giving away to job market pressure. Instead of educating the pupils and shaping their character, lately they have reduced to industries manufacturing bright minds in ways that the industry exactly wants. Now schools and colleges and universities have reduced to mere suppliers of human resource who have more productivity but are less humane.
This mechanical system of education grooms an entire generation that is less emotional, more calculative even with kith and kin, and their survival slogan is much like this – ‘Attaining personal goals are more important than the ways of attaining it’.