Friday, December 1, 2023

Education trade

While describing the essence and the real mean ing of education, Greek biographer Plutarch has said that, “The mind is not a vessel to be filled (with education), but a fire (of knowledge) to be kindled.” Unfortunately today, the minds of our students are occupied with information but are not knowledgeable enough. Nagaland for long is emulating the same pattern, and the teaching system is torn between two giants – the state and the education sellers. On the one hand with the huge organization and well-qualified human resource, the state education system is unable to prove its real worth. On the other hand, the flourishing private education sector is making a big hole in the tight pockets of the common man. Private and the state-run education systems are two faces of the same coin but the antithesis of each other: one pumping money into the system to get no results and the other earning huge money out of the results. Both ways, the system of education is suffering and the younger generation the ultimate loser. Anyways, both state-run education system and the private sector are nowhere close to Plutarch’s knowledge giving and character building through teaching. Many people say we analyze our education structure just at the time of results, whereas it should have been a continuous process of assessment. However, education system these days is so devised and entangled that whatever little assessment, it is possible only on the D-day – the examination results. And HSLC examinations results over the years have put a question mark on the prevailing education scenario. A simple question can be put not only to the state education bosses but the teachers as well. What do they do with their degrees and other training imparted at state-run institutions? The administrators have to come out of the cozy offices and administer the system beyond the old-style explanations, suspensions, attachments and frequent transfer industry. They are to run a holy assignment of managing enlighteners and knowledge seekers with a missionary zeal. Education departments should be headed by none other than passionate educationists, who can understand the system well and deliver to the best of their knowledge and experience. Educationists and education managers are not born overnight. It takes years to be a great teacher and decades to be a good educationist. State education sector cannot hide its face behind crumbling school buildings, faulty administration and mismanagement. Instead, it should openly take responsibility and introspect for its failures. The teachers who were till yesteryears considered builders of the nation have reduced themselves as cannon fodder for genuine and in-genuine demands of many. Earlier best leaders were shaped out of teachers now worst politicians get designed at the cost of teachers. Teachers were the wisest people of the society who would play a vital role in guiding humanity. Teachers have to change and change for the good of our knowledge and education. If our teachers honestly and sincerely rise above political and materialistic considerations not only will the pass percentage and education get well, but our society will turn better. Also the pass percentage picture of private education schools seemingly look rosy! But at the end of the day, they only churn out educated elites whose vessel minds are filled with tutoring about money, trade and science, and very little with knowledge of compassion and tolerance to shape into better leaders and best human beings. We don’t have any intention nor do we disrespect or disparage the private education organizations. Because in their absence by now most of us would have been school going illiterates. Over the period the private education sector played a vital role in creating a competitive education system in the State. Without naming them, several pioneers played a vital role in shaping the state’s education system. However, at present, a substantial part of our private education system is thriving only as an industry. When materialism overpowers the missionary zeal, and education turns into trade, the minds get filled with words not ignited with knowledge.