What needs to be done to improve education system

By Rita Ghosh

Fifty per cent of students failed in SSLC examination this year and 10 schools had zero performance. No doubt it is deeply shocking for all of us. Out of 100 marks (whereas 20 marks are given for internal assessment), only 30 per cent is required to pass. Then why does a regular student fail? This is the biggest question today to be solved by the stakeholders or the concerned authorities.
If a student is not performing well in the term examinations due to lack of attention, teachers must adopt interesting methods to draw his or her attention. If the methods fail, then teachers need to sit face to face with such students for a dialogue with utmost care, patience and sympathy.
In this process, the rootcauses identified till date are mainly poverty, family problem, broken family, influence of peer groups, lack of affection at home or in the school etc. For the last few years, addiction to smart phones is also distracting students. Proper counselling by an expert is preferable to control this damage, of course in consultation with parents.
English is the medium of instruction in Meghalaya but rural students are weak in English. Mother tongue would have helped them better in this connection. The quality of primary education is poor in the state, except in a handful of urban private schools. The government has introduced DELEd course to train teachers but it will take a long time.
The scope of refresher courses is less. Poor infrastructure in rural schools is also a reason for the poor performance.
Most of the students rush to tuition classes, especially for Mathematics, Science and English subjects because most of them fail in these subjects. What remedial measures have been taken so far to overcome this problem by stakeholders?
School curricula are framed with some aims and objectives to cater to the needs of individual student and the society as a whole. But in Meghalaya, the government machinery is slow in identifying social needs and fixing the aims and objectives; designing the curriculum in a proactive manner; and time-bound implementation of the curriculum.
Few years back, the term ‘School Inspector’ was replaced by ‘District School Education Officer’ but frankly speaking the term ‘Inspector’ had more weightage. School inspection created more pressure for performing better to both of the teacher and learner.
Now as the time is so crucial, parents definitely will not agree to send their children to any educational institutions. The stakeholders seriously need to find out ways and means to keep our young minds engaged with constructive activities. The Education Department alone cannot shoulder this yeomen service. Other departments such as sports, arts and culture, health, social welfare, Information Technology and Broadcasting, have to play an important role.
Our children and youths are our invaluable resources. All of us must join hands, correlate, coordinate and prepare ourselves to face the ‘New World Order’.

(The author is an
educationist)

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