The system is not the problem. The problem is the social setting that we have currently. The current system can work really well, in terms of fostering creativity, but other social aspects just prevent that. Everyone’s creative. But what matters is realizing it to make an impact. Now it isn’t so easy. Why?
1. Too Many of Us
The sheer no. of people we deal with. There are too many of us, like too many. Now the day we slack (read go out of the way to follow your heart/creative ideas), we will be run over by millions that follow.
2. Social Baggage
A typical Indian has a lot of baggage on him. He has at least 3 people to support and answer to and he is conditioned in a way that he has no ability to make his own decisions and stand for it since all the decisions have been taken by his parents all his life and it really won’t change too much. So we have a human who is not entirely free, social chains and baggage keep him bound and they pressurize him/her to follow a certain track. And it takes a lot of courage to break that system and it rarely ends up in a good situation.
3. Spoon Feeding
I believe Indians are always provided with the answer and never encouraged to find out – one big difference between the Indian education system and say it’s US counterpart. So even if we have the brains, we don’t have enough hunger to find out and explore and clearly the latter makes a difference. US heads employing Indians, cause the former had the hunger and the latter the ability to just do what is told. That is something that I personally believe is a result of constant spoon-feeding.
4. Intricate Social Network
“Unka beta IIT me padta he, tuje bhi dalwata hu coaching classes me”. Yes, we compare. We have too many Sharma Ji’s and Padose wali aunties to compare to and show ourselves superior. And we have some set norms, so we make sure our child does what would be good according to the social norms (may or may not be good always in long term). Most of the IITians do not really continue in the core engineering field. I know people (IITians) who have joined the film line (only if they did not waste their 4/5 years doing something that they would never use again).
India has a huge population at 1.3B. The current literacy rate in India is at 74%. Compare that to China who has a larger population but their literacy rate stands at 96%. India is finding it difficult to get that literacy rate up although it is growing continuously, just not at a good pace. Also, the teacher to student ratio for all of India is 1:42. That is not a conducive environment for teaching creative thinking skills in a classroom.
It is dismal, to say the least. There is a shortage of classrooms to accommodate all students in the rural areas. There is no proper sanitation or drinking water in most schools. Getting the tools and other materials for education is a far cry.
India spends 4.9% of its GDP on education, far below what is being spent by other developing countries. Teachers are not paid enough and there is always a shortage of teachers, let alone good, experienced, and trained teachers.
Finally coming to how teaching is done. All the above reasons contribute majorly to how the system is run. A majority of schools and colleges are run without proper infrastructure and personnel. Lack of training for teachers is a major culprit and they rely on old teaching methods, rote memorization, regurgitation of facts, and a focus on quantity rather than quality. The Indian child today is more burdened with the number of things they have to do to compete rather than be encouraged to enjoy the joys of discovering new concepts and applying them. During my visits to India, I have spent much time talking to students of all ages and one consistent story I hear is that they are studying just to pass and they don’t really care why a rock and a button would hit the ground at the same time!
9. Curiosity based learning is the irrational choice
Yes, it is irrational given the situation of Population Vs Resources in India. Humans are intrinsically good at weighing the pros and cons of each decision and deciding the best course. If an illiterate person in India chooses to have 10 kids, it is the rational thing to do from his or her perspective. Because more hands mean more income to a poor family. Likewise, chasing curiosity is a wrong bet in a country where 12 million youngsters enter the workforce each year.
10. Parental acceptance
Most of the parents find it difficult to accept their child’s below-average performance in other subjects even while performing exceptionally in one subject.
11. Number of Jobs available
One becomes a specialist in a subject if he’s passionate about it. In the market, we find that the requirements for specialists are less in number when compared to the generalists. India, being a populous and developing country, its society emphasizes more on getting jobs easily. Therefore parents guide their children to pursue courses/Degrees which are in demand and available in more numbers rather than allowing children to pursue their passion(and find the job in that field).
The Indian education system is mired in corruption. There is no set curriculum for most schools. There are many fake universities and colleges running in India.
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