Whenever education is the subject, discussions assume a serious meaning.

In these challenging times when we are redrawing the picture and shape of the Bhutanese education system, our investment in the system has been falling far too short.

There have been blueprint and new visions to take the Bhutanese education to new heights. More recently, we have had the Royal Kasho to reform the Bhutanese education system. Dreams we must dream, but we must also be able to walk the difficult paths to reach the rosy end.

Bhutan’s education system, in this respect, is failing.

We know the answer from the ministry already—the Covid-19. Covid-19 hasn’t done anything to disrupt the system. In fact, it has only pushed us on to aim for new greater heights. Yet, our schools, especially in remote parts of the country are left without leadership and direction. Implications will be huge, and we are talking about the lives and future of thousands of Bhutanese children. Attrition rate is also very high in the school system which needs to be addressed.

For Bhutan, a small country which can never achieve economic or military might to face the reigning powers, investment in education is the only sensible bet. Right education means giving our children the opportunity to work, create, and lead.

Our biggest problem today is the increasing youth unemployment.

Education is one of the biggest ministries in the country and, so, its focus has to be on uplifting the levels of education. The labour ministry has its own mandate. The two must not conflict.

The labour ministry’s job is to look ahead and create employment opportunities in the country; education ministry’s is to level up the standards so that our children find space and opportunity to pursue their dreams with the right and adequate skills.

We may roll out many new education systems, one after another, why not. But is it helping the nation in the end?

If we are not able to give schools what they really need, there is a problem. Lofty visions and ambitions can do little to give leg-up to the dreams of thousands of our children.

Our schools should be given all that they need. The ministry may find it easy to let it pass, but parents demand that the schools should have the right leadership at least.

Our children are in these many schools and we have the right to ask what future the schools are giving them.