I have heard this many time and I am sure each one of you would have also heard this many time – parents complaining about the fact that they are not happy with the way their kids are taught at schools. Honestly, I hate it for I have a deep attachment to Education. I believe that a society can let anything go wrong but not Education quality because good or bad Education is the root cause of everything – our happiness, our sadness, a good society, a bad society, etc. Education is the only tool with which humanity writes its future.
So, this complain of parents always troubled me – and I had always thought about it. As they say there is a reason for everything and there is a season for everything, so I guess I also have to wait for the right time for life to uncloak the answer that will make sense to me. I have worked in corporate sector for around 15 years. As one grows in his or her organization its very normal for one to start interviewing potential candidates for the organization’s requirements. It is these interviewing sessions that gave me the answer to the question as to where the fault lies.
As I interviewed more and more candidates, I used to be quite puzzled by the fact that candidates with decent marks, coming from decent schools and colleges, coming from decent families – basically nothing wrong with their background to suspect that their education would have been compromised in any fashion – such candidates were not able to explain some very basic simple concepts that they learnt in their school or in their colleges. This used to puzzle me.
How is it possible that someone having decent educational exposure is so hollow in his or her understanding of some very basic fundamental concepts?
How is it possible that one can’t explain the concepts for which one can recall the definition so well?
Just to ensure that I am not unnecessarily asking candidates something that they didn’t know or didn’t enjoy, I used to even let the candidates choose the topic they wanted to be interviewed on. In fact, I had interviewed people for software jobs by letting then choose topic of interview as geography. In one case I even let the person recite the poem he has written and we discussed that also somewhat. Since I don’t believe in stress interviews I did everything possible to have a peaceful atmosphere in the interviewing room. I would have probably interviewed over 200 candidates in my career in a very relaxed setting and I was thoroughly convinced that clearly there is something seriously wrong with the way our kids are taught at schools. To give an e.g., if one finds fault with a product then the problem either lies with the manufacturing system and processes that produced the product or the people using those systems and executing the process. But if problem continues to persist despite using best of the teams and after multiple manufacturing runs then the problem clearly lies with the system. Same with educational system – how is it possible that people coming from diverse backgrounds, diverse educational boards, diverse schools and colleges, diverse geographical regions, diverse academic accomplishments – how is it possible that a significantly meaningful proportion of them display similar levels of ignorance and incompetence irrespective of the person interviewing them on the interviewing environment?
Problem surely lies in the way these kids are getting educated – the problem is clearly with the education system. This conclusion of mine got finally got confirmed after I became a father myself. When one runs around and interacts with various other parents and kids, interacts closely with various schools to get your kids admitted, see the subjects your kids are learning and the way they are being taught by the teachers – basically when you see the system in action very closely you get a very relevant firsthand information, then this firsthand information leaves you with no element of doubt. Today I have no doubt that the fault lies with our education system or more specifically our schools.
“I suppose it is because nearly all children go to school nowadays and have things arranged for them that they seem so forlornly unable to produce their own ideas.”
– Agatha Christie
This conclusion made me very sad. How can we allow our educational system to become so ineffective? It is this system that will decide the future of our specie and if it’s faulted so horribly we are running a grave risk. Something needs to be done – something definitely needs to be done. It is this sadness that germinated the initiative called DreamNobel. Obviously initially it was just an idea – there is something wrong with our educational system and something needs to be done – but what needs to be done, how it needs to be done – I had not the faintest of idea. So, I was back to the philosophy – there is reason for everything and there is a season for everything. I had to wait once again for life to uncloak the answer, but the good part was that now the problem was defined clearly.
Problem: Why is our education system so ineffective in making our kids learn meaningfully?
To be continued…
DreamNobel is an education initiative to teach Science subjects to kids in a way that original & independent thinking and empathy becomes an integral part of their personality. We have developed a unique and revolutionary course (Eklavya) whereby a kid can be taught broadly all the Science subjects (Physics, Chemistry, Biology & Geology) in an integrated manner, through a unique story and rationalization led pedagogy.