When government across the Indian states are highly concentrating to boast about its achievements throughout the past year, the victory of AAP has put a new dimension on how we look at the terms like achievement and development. One of the key areas they are willing to focus on is the education system. No doubt the achievements by the previous governments are good enough to discuss upon, but when compared with the loop holes in the system that can hamper our future, the achievements seem to be a reprehensible joke which symbolise downright negligence. AAP has promised to present a new education system dealing with nuanced reforms expressed in a very affirmative form for the society. It has scrapped the management quota which promoted donation in nursery admission. It has promised to rectify the government schools and Delhi’s education system.
Need For Education
The most important loophole in our system that has been neglected till now is our initial stage of education, which has led to the shambling stage of our education system. In this sector the primary or elementary education is comparatively less important than the higher education in our country.
According to Jean Dreze and Amartya Sen the importance of basic education is demonstrated in nine points. First, reading, writing, counting ability brings freedom to an individual to communicate with others. Second, economic opportunities get improved. Third, in a democratic society like India, educated people get an idea to choose the right person as their representatives, through their political consciousness, which again is built through the right educational platform. Fourth, education gives an individual the clear picture about health issues, sanitation etc. Fifth, people get an idea about human rights, which unfortunately have not been debated and discussed among general masses and has been a sensitive topic for elites and urban India only. Sixth, through education several legal rights are known to the individual. Seventh, women empowerment, a very sensitive and equally crucial issue is achieved through this basic education. Eighth, people get rid of an orthodox way of living, including the inequalities between human beings related to caste, class etc. Ninth, study is an act which in itself provides critical feelings to the individual pursuing it.
Unfortunately, in India more stress is given on higher education than the primary or secondary education. Indian states are harshly shouting to get financial support to increase industrial growth. But they are forgetting that the financial help can support the states to build infrastructures, buy machines and a large labour force, but cannot bring the development economically. This is because, even when we have the latest machinery and a large labour force; it will always remain true that an educated worker can yield more if compared with their uneducated counterparts.
If the standard of education will improve in the basic stage, the group of students entering the higher education level will be standardised. Where our higher education institutes like IITs, IIMs, JNU, DU and various top universities etc are producing successful products and are recognised worldwide, our basic education level will also be able to produce a larger percentage of productive and sensitive students from urban or rural areas who can reduce the gap between advantaged and disadvantaged groups and thus will have a positive impact on our society and governance at large. India has 20 % of its child population between the age group of 6-14 years, who don’t attend school. About 10% of children didn’t get enrolled in the school (especially girl child). This negligence in children and disregard of girl child happens especially in rural areas and in the urban slums. This can happen because India is failing to produce sufficient primary teachers for them. The basic awareness programme set up by the government about the improvement of life standards and way of living is missing. Privatization of schools is more in our country. The competition between the private schools is hampering the basic education of children.
It has become state a responsibility to upgrade the education system of India, and the first step is that it must increase the number of government schools and adequate number of teachers should be allotted there. According to the report of Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2012, even after the increase in social and economic standards, the performance of government school is better than private schools. The number of government schools should be increased and made accessible to everyone. The concept of a neighbourhood school proposed by AK Sharma chaired drafting group set up by ministry of human resources development (MHRD) to provide the “model rules” to go with the Right to Education Bill is still under consideration.
If India is willing to be called developed in a truly democratic manner, it should work on the aspect of universal education system. Within this system the focus should be on elementary and secondary education level and even in higher education level also. Without improving the universal education system, our education system cannot improve. In this dismal stage, where noticeable percentage of India’s population is languishing in every aspect including in educational field, India should seriously work on elementary production of literate individuals through mass literacy focusing mainly on basic education.