For indeed, central schools must succeed

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.

1 reply
  1. irfan
    irfan says:

    Education alone not necessarily present us with any livelihoods unless there is a system to recognise educational qualifications and reward them accordingly. One with all his education may also decide to become a paid educator or educationalist; but that’s more of ‘private tuition’ in today’s education system. Our education can definitely make us better readers and thinkers. Together it can contribute to our intellectual developments. Now is our schools and the school education system contributing to intellectual development of today’s students when they are young and learning to learn on their own! It’ll not be that easy to answer that for sure.

    A central school system is more often very much opposite to a ‘private tuition’ or just ‘private education’ system. Today’s private education system is about privately owned non government schools which are known for the higher fees that parents need to pay to send their children to attend them. The differences in administration and management styles may not necessarily contribute to better education or intellectual developments of our young learners. But it’s all totally a different matter whether we want education for intellectual developments. Even intellectually gifted knowledge doesn’t ensure any livelihood unless there is a system of salaried researchers in university education of some kind.

    Any free or/and compulsory education system will have its advantages and disadvantages. When we consider the central school system; we also expect free boarding and other facilities without which education may not be a possibility. But another reality is that we are still having rather long academic years in completing primary to middle secondary level education while most of the must needed learning are happening only in higher secondary levels. We only have college and university education to follow after that. Education for all has always been an expensive dream; but it doesn’t cost a fortune to be truly educated if one is presented with the facilities and opportunities. This is where a central school system can create a difference as here it’s an opportunity to make education help growth of intellectual development. And as we can’t think of a hospital without the nurses to take care of the patients, we need caretakers in these central schools also. How good a caretaker be a ‘care-giver’ remains the challenge. Certificates can be earned or achieved while education usually remains a natural process.

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