Ken Robinson, author, speaker and international advisor on education, in his remarkable book – “Creative Schools” explains 4 reasons why governments around the world enforce education.
Here is my take on these reasons and how a better education system can bring a change:
Economy – Better education system for a better career?
The primary purpose of education is to become financially independent. Governments across the world also promote education for same reason. And this also should be one of the main purpose of education, but not the only one.
What kind of subjects are included under school education today, so that they earn enough when time comes?
Let’s talk about what is already taught in most schools today.
- They are learning languages, particularly English, but we hardly see students coming out of schools or universities as good reporters, interpreters, speakers, translators, writers or story tellers.
- Math is considered just as a scoring subject or a beast support to be cleared by one third of total marks.
- Science – let’s save this topic for another post.
- Sports, arts and other subjects are left to private coaching & activity centres.
Last week, I had a meeting with an Art teacher, who works in a very reputed school of Bhavnagar. I got pleasantly surprised when he said that he is very busy throughout the week and works from 8 AM to 8 PM, starting with school, and tuitions for rest of the day.
My excitement vanished when he told me that 80% of the parents have hired him, so that he can complete art & craft projects that their kids get from their schools, which actually are always out of the kids’ capacities.
He revealed to me that 15% of parents, put their kids in my drawing class because they aim for their kids to become doctors & engineers and want them to prepare drawing figures & diagrams. 4% of them come so they can be part of competitions and create a better portfolio with the certificates they win. Just 1% of the students have a passion for art. Some day she May replace this art teacher and start earning out of her art skills.
Image Source: https://sarahgracegriswold.org/resume/arts-in-education/
What are the real skills that we need to inculcate in our children as to create a better education system?
- Flexibility and adaptability
- Ability to learn new skills
- Networking and communicating with other people
- Selling their skills to others
Unfortunately, we don’t see any of these in the entire curriculum.
Cultural – Education Nurturing Moral Beliefs
The Gita has taught us to understand & appreciate our culture and to understand & respect other cultures. That is what Hinduism is. And that is what tolerance is. But our community is now divided into the following categories:
- Those who don’t know anything about Hinduism or India in reality, but keep buegaling ‘Fables’ on social media. Sadly, a significant majority.
- Those who don’t know anything about Hinduism or India and keep degrading everything about our culture and praise other cultures. They feel proud of it.
- Those who know our culture but have blindfolded themselves. . They neither want to know anything more nor want to respect other’s thoughts.
- Those who really understand Hinduism and Indianization, appreciate it, , are proud of it, understand others’ culture and respect it..
In the present situation, the first three are in a whopping majority. But those who dream for a better India are responsible to educate their kids to this aspect too. This is another reason as to why governments enforce education. And also a reason to why we should look forward to a better education system.
Social – Better Education System For Co-existing
Education is expected to make students responsible and respectful citizens. Education is also supposed to teach us basic etiquettes that we have to follow to co-exist in this world.
But aren’t we also aware of the number of suicides being committed by students? Solely because of teachers, schools and the education system collectively.
And I fear that the number may surpass murders & rapes executed by students over their fellow classmates or schoolmates. Aren’t we supposed to educate children on how life is too valuable to lose?
We all cast our vote with conscious thinking, but the kind of people sitting in our parliament are a national shame. Aren’t they? Not all of them for sure but we all know a few of them, who are and what was our thought process when we voted for them? In fact there was no thought at all or else they would not have gotten elected in the first place.
Did education tell us what factors we should consider while we were deciding whom we want to give our vote to?
I am in a flight while writing this article. Every time a flight lands in India, air hostesses requests passengers to remain seated until the aircraft lands. Don’t we know that the flight won’t go away anywhere before we deboard? But is that how we really behave?
Personal – Knowledge for Self Help
In almost all professional & HR surveys ‘Job satisfaction’ is rated as the top most reason of doing or not doing a job. But rarely you get satisfaction. Why is it so rare?
What really is job satisfaction?
As Ken Robinson says. “There are two worlds. The world which exists even if you don’t exist. The world of events, of objects and people. And the second world is your own world, which comes when you come and ends as you go. This world consists of your thoughts, beliefs & action.”
We know the first world but very few people know something about the second world. Rest do nothing. When you know your own world and and make an impact on the outer world with it, that very intersection brings satisfaction.
That is also one of the purpose of education. To prepare a person of actions as to create something that is useful to outer world. To channelise his thoughts in a positive direction and build better and stronger beliefs which does not change with every single WhatsApp message being forwarded to you.
We need to bring about a change. The education system in our country needs to change and we need to thrive for a better education system. Ironically, few things have changed from the colonial times. We have established IITs, IIMs, law schools and other institutions of excellence.
But rote learning still plagues our system, students study only to score marks in exams. It’s become a number game. The goal of the education system should be on creating entrepreneurs, artists, scientists, thinkers and writers to create a knowledge based economy and build a better future altogether.