How Flawed Is the Indian Education System?

There are many evident faults and flaws in the Indian educational system. Delving deeper into this rabbit hole only amplifies and brings to light the more intricate cracks and crevices in this sector. The most integral part of the Indian education system is its teachers who hold the ability to make or break, among other things a student’s future and his or her perspective to certain subjects. The question here is to what extent are the teachers to be blamed for the many flaws of the education scenario in the country. Being such an integral part of the system the teachers have little to do with the faults in the system. They are after all bound by a set of instructions and rules of the syllabus, and the education ministry. There is only little they can do about it. However, how they teach a subject and engage the students is entirely up to them.

Students lose interest in a subject if the teaching methodology and pedagogy is ineffective and uninteresting. So in that sense the teachers have a massive role to play. In many cases, especially in rural India, teachers are not qualified enough to be able to teach in a school or college. Most teachers also use the chalk and talk or the traditional methods of teaching. The lack of usage and implementation of technology in classrooms is one of the biggest challenges faced by the education system in India. Some might argue that computers and other technological advancements in schools and educational institutions might prove to be a massive distraction, on the contrary, if used with proper rules and regulations, technology can open up a whole new world for students in India. Not only will they be able to apply knowledge practically but also be able to access a world that is physically inaccessible.

Practical knowledge and application of whatever they learn within the confines of a classroom is absolutely necessary, this is another factor that is overlooked in the educational system. Most students are unable to process and understand the concept of what is being taught in class and resort to rote learning for examinations. They are unable to retain what they learn and apply it to day to day life. They lack the ability to critically analyse a situation or a problem and often find it difficult to form opinions of their own. They are not taught to question things and are forced to conform within a rigid framework.

Moreover there is also a severe dearth of classes such life skills, mental health, financial literacy, sex education which are indispensible. Even at the most basic levels, addressing these topics is absolutely necessary, especially in country like India where there are so many taboos, stigmas and stereotypes attached to these topics. These issues are brushed under the carpet and hence students are unable to understand such concepts when they grow older. Even topics like gender sensitisation have not been addressed in classrooms, making the children extremely ignorant. This normalises issues such as sexism, homophobia, hate speech and even racism in their everyday life.

Another major shortcoming in the Indian education system is how it puts an unhealthy amount of emphasis on marks and grades. Most teachers and parents believe that students thrive under pressure. However, in most cases, they crack under pressure. The burden of living up to unnecessarily high expectations takes a toll on the mental health of the students. Even as their mental health deteriorates their parents refuse to acknowledge it and brush it away as teen angst. In many cases this has led to students, particularly adolescents, taking extremely drastic measures. The rising numbers of student suicides is a result of high pressure in schools. Even in schools, counselling is provided only as a formality and there is also severe lack of transparency and confidentiality when it comes to school counsellors. When Parents see a drop in their child’s grades, they are quick to put them in private tuitions and coaching institutes instead of getting to the root of the problem. However, the truth is that unhealthy competition is extremely detrimental to the child’s mind because there is simply no development or growth. This crushes whatever ambitions, dreams or aspirations that they may have.

These problems are especially valid and relevant in the rural areas where there is a severe lack of resources. Things such as promoting negative competition among students, putting unnecessary pressure on them and completely neglecting their mental health show that the Indian education system has a long way to go in terms of student reach. Also, the funds allocated to the educational sector must be increased and steady implementation of the RTE is necessary.

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