Ideas grand and novel have a way to not work and give some really severe heartaches. But then, if every idea that pulsated with some semblance of life in the head of thinking men found a fecund home, there would scarcely be any problem in the world.
We are talking about what is happening in some central schools in the country today. The idea of central school was great. We applauded it when the government went ahead with it because we had little choice. We had to throw in some affirmative nods even as we knew there would be problems because whether we said yes or no there would be central schools.
And now the problems are beginning to show, just the kind of complications we saw coming as the idea of central school started to roll in.
New academic session has started. There is admission pressure in many schools. Mendrelgang Central School, for example, is now not admitting smaller children – those who are just beginning their educational journey, particularly. The school will not accept admission for Class III and down because the school doesn’t have caregivers.
Of the many problems we saw ourselves facing the moment we heard about the grand plan of central schools where students will get everything free starting from toothpaste, this in particular looked serious. Wonder how the government missed it.
We cannot blame the principals because they have already done over and beyond what they could in their capacity. In fact, they deserve our praise for going out of the way to enrol as many students as they could. But they are also faced with problems. Teacher’s primary responsibility is to teach and take care of children when he or she is in school. There their responsibility ends, and should. Teachers have their world to engage in too. We cannot expect them to be full-time caregivers.
Students come from remote corners of the country. The idea of central school was that the school would provide everything so that the school’s responsibility is just to accommodate the number and deliver lessons and see the academic year off successfully. As if our teachers have been basking in the sun the whole 360 days!
It is upon the government now to deliver what it promised to give. The government’s inability to provide care services should not affect admission in schools because this will have long-term impact on hundreds and thousands of promising individuals.
We are talking about future custodians of this country. Let not a dream not spoil a dream. There could be nothing worse than that.
Send caregivers to schools immediately. If the idea of central school must work, the government should keep its promise and provide all the facilities it said will be required for the success of central schools.
Dreams may be big, but they could turn out to be staggeringly shallow if we fail to live up to their grandiosity.