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Is it fair? Let us discuss

March 5, 2009

This week, once again the ‘acid test’/Board exams (in that way only it has been seen) has begun for the X and XII standard students. Students are considered as the missiles and there is only target is to get as many marks as possible. In the process, they have to undergo stress test, concentration test, sustainability and durability test. These 2 years changes the life of the students (as many of them were saying). But at times at the end of these 2 years many of the students bright career ends.

It starts:

When a child goes to the school, his/her parent will ask, “What are you going to become?” Before that child could answer anything, they will add, “Doctor or Engineer?”  Now the child has only 2 options to choose. All the things that he/she had in mind will go off like a smoke in the air. They will repeatedly say those two things. For a child, parents are his/her world and they  start believing that there is no other profession in this world, as they are their world (When I went to return the form for B.Sc in Loyala College,  I have given a wierd look). Once they reach their 9th standard, they will become the punching bag of many. The schools will start ditching them to show the results. Parents will do the same in the home, for the bright career of their son/daughter. The stress with which they have to undergo is unimaginable. I am one of the victims of these so-called important years.

When a student enters 9th standard, parents will start to say, “The coming 4 years are the important one in your life. You must study well and get the first mark. Then it’s all a cake walk.” Is it true? The answer is left wide open to you all. The schools: to get a good name among the parents they were starting the X standard portions just after the IX standard half-yearly exams (the same is applicable to XII). They make the parents to believe that it is a step they are taking to help their child to get good marks. In addition to that, they kill the learning ability of the students by conducting the tests every now and then(to put it straight, daily). Parents will say proudly that in my child’s school they have started the X or XII syllabus now itself. The others will think that their children (studying in government or government-aided schools) were lagging behind and make them to join in some coaching classes. Now the other students seeing them will join the tutorials. This is a domino effect.

Educational goons:

I will solely blame those school administrators for this. They are trained professionals, and they must have known what education is? But they are going out of their values and they already shattered the entire school education with their business minded attitude. They have forgotten that the syllabus of each and every year was designed with the students’ capability in mind. If you are able to complete the 9th or 11th syllabus within 6 months, why you need some 13 months for 10th or 12th standards? By this you are all setting the wrong example for incompleteness. Our school syllabus is designed in such a way that each and every academic year is a continuation of the previous years. Without learning the previous years properly, how a student will shine in board exams?

Some News:

Last Sunday I have read news in TOI, which said that 11 students were given TC just before the final exams. The school had asked the seven students to take the final exams privately for which the school had already arranged for and the rest were treated as discontinued candidates. When contacted, a representative of school management has said “the seven students had been treated only as private candidates during the last one year and that four were given TC as their parents sought for it.” The chief educational officer G.Rajalakshmi was swiftly acted and said that all the 11 students were eligible to write the exams. And also blamed the school authorities and a probe were ordered into this.

If that school management representative has said like that then I have to laugh at him/her. Were any of the parents were mad to seek the TC of their child just before the final exams? How he/she was  expecting that everyone will believe it? It clearly states that they are not all worried about the child’s future. All they have concerned is the centum results against their school name and the amount they can get as donation for next academic year. If they are not potent enough to make a child to get a minimum 35 marks out of 100, then I call their 13 month X or XII routine as a failed one!!

Some Reports:

Due to the stress, lots of children were ending their precious life at this young age. By NCRB stats more than 5,857 students were killed themselves in 2006-07.

According to TOI,

  • a Delhi student was hanged himself from ceiling fan and before that he wrote, “I can’t take the pressure any longer. I love my family and I hope they will understand.” They were broken. They were crushed. And the end result is everyone to see.
  • A Jharkhand girl set herself on fire after she failed to clear her Class X pre-board exams. Within each heart-breaking story lay the chance that the despairing youth could have been someone — with or without achieving conventional academic success.

Read more about this here.

Real-life Incidents:

The tests which were happening throughout that year will make them feel like, “Is there any other bad thing in this world than this?” They will be deprived of any information that is happening around them. I have heard the below incidents happened, when they were studied their XII standard:

  • A boy who is very much talented in sports ( In long distance running: 800m, 1500m) was put in a boarding school, even after he was pleaded to his father that he will become a champion in running as he was bettering day by day.
  • Another one, who was continuously beaten up by his father for his every lost mark in every mock tests was mentally affected just before the exams. His father will beat him even if he scores 199/200 in an ordinary class test., asking for the one mark he hasn’t scored. Now after all the medical attention, he was running a grocery shop.

Now you could see what these important years have done to them. They had a dream. But everything was lost. They have lost their individuality. And the worst thing is, they were even lost what they have achieved.

My personal experience:

The years in which I have studied the XII standard are the worst ones in my life (X and XI std are also have the same story). Everyday I will get an earful from both my dad and mom. I am not able to remember a single day in which I have not got scolded for my academic performance(don’t think that I am exaggerating. It is true). I was not allowed to speak anything other than my studies. At last I just stopped saying all the things happening in my school including studies as I always got average marks. To extract something from me is big thing in my home and I have never recovered from that. Still I am talking very limitedly in my home (not by intention), even though my mom and dad want me to talk about many things. To sum up(let me stop at this, else it will become a big post 😀 ), I will not be myself in my home.

I have always thought that when the people were educated they will know what the education really means. But when I had a conversation with my friend(about his brother studying in IXth Std)  last week, it was completely shattered. Here goes the conversation:

Me: How is your brother? How is he studying?

Friend: He is doing well. (Proudly)Do you know? For him, they have started the X std English and Tamil now itself?

Me: (Shocked) X std portions now itself? Why they are doing so?

Friend: The English grammar was really tough in X std. They will start by now itself and they will keep on give practice. Even during my school days, they have done like that.

Me: Hmmm. Is the grammar is going to differ in X std? We are studying it from our kinder garden. It is a continuation. Without learning the IX standard properly, how will he do well in X?

Friend: Hey, it is not like you are thinking. It is really tougher than IX std. They will complete the prose, poetry by now and then keep on giving the grammar exercises.

Me: If they are doing this means, they will do the same in XI also.

Friend: (With proud) Yes. During my time they have started the XII portions by January itself. As the XII standard is tough, you know.

Me: What are you talking? Without completing the previous years how can they go ahead?

Friend: They will rush up the XI std portions and start XII std in January itself.

Me: (Angrily) how are you supporting this? This is not the way we must have our education. You didn’t understand the real meaning of education.

Friend: Are you a nut? Talk about those things in practical.

Me: What is practical? Jumping off from one grade to grade without completing it?

Friend: You won’t understand it. Class X and Class XII are really tough (again repeated the same old dialogues, supporting this).

Our conversation has ended soon with none of us have changed our stands and I can’t believe myself. She has completed her degree and still she didn’t understood what education really means? When she is like this, how can I blame the people who never completed their school? They are all thinking that education is just in the text books given to gain marks. According to them, the more the marks one has scored is directly proportional to the knowledge one has. It is all a mirage created by those so called teachers in the schools, to make them (including my friend) believe that X or XII is really tough and they are starting those syllabuses soon has reason.

Let us discuss:

  • I know many of you may differ with what I have said above. Because I have seen everything from a student point of view who just ditched for those board exams. I haven’t considered the students who enjoys this pressure and I haven’t seen this from a parental point of view.
  • I am not supporting the drop out from the schools too, just because Albert Einstein and Thomas Alva Edison has become great scientists. Because their percentage is very low. To lead a good life, I believe that education is important.
  • But is the present education system and schools I can also include parents in this, are fair enough in accessing the capabilities of a child? I am also confident that most of the children were hating the education now, due to the mark basis system. What could be the better one?

As a end note, I can say the education for a children must be like blossoming of a flower slowly and naturally and not like, we ourselves taking the bud and opening the petals with our fingers. In the process, we will tear off the petals and will do a irreparable damage.

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23 Comments leave one →
  1. March 5, 2009 2:19 am

    Completely agree Kanagu…and the pressure to perform is intense I saw it in my school days when parents of friends used to get hyper and see it now when parents of my students get hyper too…

    the only rule mom and dad had was”dont flunk!”:D
    sadly I broke that one too 😀 they were okay after the initial shock 😀
    which is why I am okay if anyone flunks,been there ,done that 🙂

    anyway,the point is that it is us the teachers,the parents,the society ,the education system itself that makes it such a huge issue…and sadly in some cases a life and death issue…

    What kind of a pathetic education system do we have that seeks to murder a child?because that is what it is when a child commits suicide..the pressure the sheer pressure drives them to take this extreme step!

    ”As a end note, I can say the education for a children must be like blossoming of a flower slowly and naturally and not like, we ourselves taking the bud and opening the petals with our fingers. In the process, we will tear off the petals and will do a irreparable damage.”
    Beautifully put Kanagu!yes,children are buds who have not yet bloomed..and it is our responsiblity that they do ..happily and with a smile and loads of sunshine:)

    PS:-nowadays some schools are doing away with the mark system till 8th class and are going with PBL or project based learning ,where a child is looked at as a complete individual

    kanagu: Are you a teacher, Indyeah? it is great. And the pressure our students were facing is unbearble and I am one of them. Our parents needs to be educated more on this. They have to be shown more oppurtunities for their children are waiting and ask them to let them to make their choice. As a teacher, you can make them understand, as you are in direct communication with them.
    And even though many schools are getting away with the exam practice, still the students have to face those enormous pressure during ‘important years’ 😦
    I never flunked in my school and college days. But I never felt like, I am very much at home in studies 😀 They will be always an alien to me

  2. March 5, 2009 2:27 am

    Completely agree. There is too much pressure on students. I really don’t know whom to blame.
    Think about this…if 100 years ago, all the married couples would have decided that they will have only 2 children instead of 10, the situation would have been entirely different. A 100 seats and 10000 students fighting over them would undoubtedly mount the pressure.
    I think the present generation needs to understand the importance of population control so that the coming generation does not suffer as we all have because of the stupidity of the previous one.

    kanagu: That is a real different perspective Amit. I had never thought about that. But then past is past. We have grown in population in an incomparable rate. What we have to do now is, to show the students and their parents that there is no need to rush behind the marks..as there are many other works in this country to do welll and lead a happy life !!!

  3. March 5, 2009 3:03 am

    Brilliant article dude…
    I completely agree…. there is just a lot of stress on the children, and we all went thru it… 🙂
    The system leaves a lot to be desired… 😦
    but the only positive point I can see in our system is that students become hard… and in life, generally face any situation… (if they survive schooling)…

    As the famous saying goes:
    “I never let my schooling interfere with my education”…. 🙂

    kanagu:
    /*the only positive point I can see in our system is that students become hard… and in life, generally face any situation… */
    True Ajit!! now-a-days nothing seems to be a bigger thing worry. I always think that I have went those all in my schooling… LOL 😆
    Our education system Sucks 😡

  4. March 5, 2009 6:04 am

    I think eduation is not required after eigth standard. I suggest dropping out right after that if the kids want to become anything in life. Memorization skills are not that important in practical life, which is the only skill that kids learn after eigth standard.

    Destination Infinity

    kanagu: Yeah!!! but I think we are not bringing up a children in a way, where he/she could decide his career by their 13 year into this world. We have show them the oppurtunities first then they can take their decision. I think till 10th grade, a children need education.

  5. March 5, 2009 10:14 am

    There is nothing selfless about parenting, it is a completely selfish pursuit. Often we are at odds with our parents about how they have treated us. The ambition of theirs can not be our ambition and they have to be told this clearly. The problem is there is no agency in India that will protect children from their own parents. The society is so structured that very few jobs get people the respect they deserve. Its not that difficult to observe just see how people who work with their hands are treated in this country. So this is just a mixing up of those issues and the creation of a new problem.

    kanagu:
    /*The problem is there is no agency in India that will protect children from their own parents.*/
    Touchwood.
    Our country always treated the people with differeent standards, without knowing the importance of them. Our parents have to come off the age

  6. March 5, 2009 11:16 am

    Sad but true scenario these days in India!! 😦

    kanagu: 😦

  7. March 5, 2009 5:40 pm

    I completely agree with you…Education is not about marks but about learning…But without marks one can’t attend good colleges…I wonder if the so called ‘brillian’ students who consistently score well have actually learnt anything other than memorizing…Can they think for themselves?

    The sad truth is that the competition in India so tough that students are expected/forced to do well hence, the pressure…

    kanagu: Welcome here, Bones!!!
    As I have said, the educational system in India suks and it requires a complete re-vamp. It must put full stop for the practice of each and everybody running behind a single career. A diversified one is needed

  8. March 5, 2009 7:37 pm

    Great post, Kanagu. I completely agree with you. The pressure that the poor kids go through just makes me sick (I was no exception either, but things seem to have got much worse now). Because of these X and XII standard board examinations, education has been reduced to merely studying textbooks to obtain marks and not education in the real sense of the term. Even if the board examinations are abolished, there will be something else like entrance exams. I think the kids will be made to suffer in any case 😦

    • March 6, 2009 12:19 pm

      When I have studied it’s really worse. It’s like if we lose marks
      it is something similar to losing my life. But some constructive
      measures are needed and I am thinking about it. As of now, there
      wouldn’t be much change in our sucking educational system 😡

  9. March 5, 2009 8:00 pm

    Brilliant post!!!!

    When I see my frenz & colleagues putting pressure on their kids my heart goes out to the kids….

    • March 6, 2009 12:21 pm

      Thanks Smita 🙂
      The parents were really harsh on their kids when it comes to studies.
      Even though their concern is right, too much of pressure will
      backfire, like in my case 😦

  10. March 6, 2009 2:42 pm

    As it is, like I mentioned in ur other article, education has become a business. And children are bearing the brunt of it. Pity!

    Try posting this to Jagruti sometime… We have discussed abt Education system before.

    Peace. Be well.

    kanagu: Sure Kartz… I will post it there.. First I thought about it… but then as it contained some real life experiences.. I thought it may not be suitable..
    I will post it soon 🙂

  11. March 6, 2009 4:50 pm

    Gr8 post kanagu !!
    Parents are too selfish these days..they want their kid to be superkid…who is doing well in every sphere without realising that they are in a way exploiting thier own kid by putting too much pressure…

    i feel pity for these kids…thank god my parents are not like this…

    I got lot of freedom during my childhood days…:-)

    kanagu: Yes!!! everybody wants their child to mature soon and they forgot to love their innocence.. Anyway you are a lucky kid 🙂

  12. March 7, 2009 1:47 am

    We should remind everyone that even Albert Einstein didn’t do so well in school when he was younger. School performance is not always a good indicator of ability.

    kanagu: School performance may not be an indicator but a basic education is must for everybody

  13. March 8, 2009 1:14 pm

    every child who is being robbed off his childhood by insensitive parents and teachers who believe their job is to create race-winning rats for the rat race in the competitive fervor rather than Einsteins, Edisons, Picassos and Leonardo Da Vincis?

    kanagu: So true, Karthik 😦

  14. March 8, 2009 3:52 pm

    Great post and very true.

    kanagu: Thanks Reema 🙂

  15. Solilo permalink
    March 10, 2009 2:02 am

    Kanagu, This is one of your best posts. I don’t even remember what it is to be a student anymore. So much pressure even at our times but with world becoming more competitive, kids are becoming robotic. It is not about knowledge anymore but about grades and status.

    kanagu: Thanks Solilo 🙂
    Kids were made to chase the marks and in the process, they were losing their identity.. sad but thats the true thing now.. 😦

  16. Nimmy permalink
    March 10, 2009 1:41 pm

    Wow..this is one of your best posts Kanagu… I really mean it.. I an understand you,as i too ahve went through the same tunnel..

    Maybe I will forget all those days tomoroow,but i will never forget the pain I had when my 10 th results came and the first words that came out of my mother’s mouth is ‘Oh,just this”.. I was mad with joy over my marks and i came running to her telling this,then i got this holy reply.. **sigh** Life is unfair you know 🙂 Its not just with me,but all my cousins and others ahve the same expriene with their parents.. I wonder why parents are so reluctant to appreciate their OWN kids while they can go ga ga over other kids petty acheivements..

    Maybe they ahve ego problems,no disrespect intented,but i can find no other reason…

    And oh well,I got 89% in 10th and now you know why I that remark has left a still alive wound in my heart..

    kanagu: Yeah!!! I have got the same feelings.. all my parents wanted was 100% marks else first mark, other than that is not all acceptable.. I know I couldn’t get any of them.. so just left them and set my own standards 🙂
    When our parents says like that means it very hard thing to swallow.. after putting all the effort we have heard.. just this.. *sigh*

  17. rudraksh sharma permalink
    April 12, 2009 3:31 pm

    very good , my father read it and very much impressed . i am sixth standard student at dps sonipat.

    kanagu: Welcome here, rudraksh 🙂
    Thank you very much and convey the same to your father friend 🙂
    Love to have your visits more here 🙂

  18. Vikram P. Singh permalink
    May 9, 2009 7:52 pm

    I am completely agree to this. there is a high pressure on the student. But the
    CBSE’s “Central School ”
    complete the course on time and not in hurry.

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