With the CBSE class 12 results already out, the admission rush is about to begin. This year, a total of 12,737 students have scored 95% and above, higher than last year’s count of 10,138. In Delhi alone, 2,237 students scored 95%. With this huge spike in the ‘Club-95’, we can obviously expect skyrocketing cut-offs at Delhi University. In the past too, students have complained about unrealistically high cut-offs, which have gone on to deprive them of admission to a college or course of their choice. Last year too, the cut-offs were as high as 99.66%.
But amidst all the cheers and the celebration around the spectacular performance of the students in the boards, we are posed with many uncomfortable and serious questions. Earlier, one could have imagined scoring 100% marks in maths, accountancy, physics and the other sciences. But these days, students are scoring 100% even in subjects like English and history! This is not to say that it’s bad to score high marks, but are these ‘perfect scores’ good enough to prove one’s ability? What about those students who don’t score as high as 90% or 95%?
Are these scores necessarily a validation of a person’s true potential? Is it at all going to make one successful in life? Aren’t we creating a mirage for our students, which is far away from the ground reality ?
In India, we have a world-class ‘filtration system’ in place of an education system. There have been so many examples and motivational stories of people who weren’t school toppers, but who went on to become some of the most successful and iconic personalities of the world. But here, we give so much importance to ‘marks’ – as if it’s the only thing that will decide the successful future of an individual.
The arrival of any exam season builds anticipation among masses – and why shouldn’t it? For a country like ours, which is so academically-oriented (or rather, ‘result-oriented’), exams have always been a huge affair. Your ‘exam results’ unite you even with your most distant relatives whom you haven’t seen for years, but are now enquiring about your results.
But jokes apart, by just making the toppers’ list headline the mainstream news everywhere, we are sidelining the graver problems which have become deeply rooted inside our system. Education has become more of a psychological burden on the minds of the students rather than being an enjoyable learning experience. The issue has risen due to the undue stress of scoring high marks, clearing entrance exams and getting into right college.
But the million dollar question which we need to answer is that even after stressing so much over ‘marks’, ‘entrance exams’ and ‘degrees’, where are the jobs?
Are the courses in the universities structured well-enough to ensure employment? Does a valid degree necessary guarantee a job today? Are we giving sufficient ‘practical exposure’ to the students, apart from making them memorise facts, definitions and theories?
Are all the people who are employed happy with their jobs, or do they also feel under-employed? Are there sufficient career-counselling services and guides available in our schools and colleges to help out our students?
Unfortunately, no stress is being given on quality vocational training in our schools and colleges, which is much required to make our students employable.
There has to be an intense revision of our current syllabus. A culture of innovation, that will feed more startups and create jobs, also needs to be promoted. Reforms in regulatory bodies like the UGC, the AICTE, the MCI and amendments to the current education policy are much needed. Education in India is often criticised for being based on rote-learning and cramming rather than problem-solving. Therefore today, we are witnessing an era of ‘jobless growth’.
Though the number of universities, colleges and programmes keep on rising in the country, the lack of quality education still persists. Rote-learning methods, profit-hungry managements, lack of skill- education, corruption, and lack of teaching faculty (both in quantity and quality) are the major issues plaguing the Indian education system.
The country desperately needs to look beneath the surface to understand the problems that plague the education system and produce a quality system that matches and fuels the country’s ‘shining growth story’.
Featured image used for representative purposes only.