Sunday, April 20, 2008

SUICIDES AMONGST STUDENTS : THE FEAR FACTOR

The growing number of tragic suicides of school students in our city within the last few days should send the alarm bells ringing in the corridors of powers that formulate the education pattern of our students. Such young lives snuffed out due to unreasonable reasons makes us wonder where are we heading and what are our priorities in life.

I have been teaching the students from the age group of 15-18 years almost for the last two decades and have realized that the dual pressure of doing well in the board examination as well as simultaneously gaining entry into a technical course tears apart the student. The basic reason for this adverse state of mind is that the syllabus of the technical courses’ entrance examinations do not have much in common with the content or the level of the courses being pursued at the plus two level. Add to this the enormous fee structure of the additional coaching that has become the staple diet of all the students making them vulnerable to domestic financial crunches. The attitude of the teachers and instructors at this level also leaves much to be desired. Either an average or below average student is insulted in ways more than one or is pressurized into attending a coaching run by the teacher. Sometimes parents too, become unreasonable and demand a level of efficiency from the student which he is not capable of delivering. On being reminded the parents usually remark wryly that they do not want their wards to remain as “average” students.

So where do we go from here? I have repeatedly sent missives to the concerned ministry of Govt of India to change the way the examinations are held in our country. If the patterns suggested therein were adhered too, we would not have the blood of so many of our students on our hands. Since the government is least concerned about the state of this country let us ourselves try to do what we can.

Firstly, the parents should understand that marks are not the be all and end all of anybody’s life. I can give any number of examples from my own students who did just alright at the board examinations but have later made it up in their lives and are pursuing fulfilling careers.

Secondly we should get rid of the national hobby for becoming engineers / doctors. Whenever a child is born in India, the parents dream of putting him in the portals of IITs or AIIMS. In most cases this is a desirable but unrealistic way of looking at your child. These institutes of national and international repute require a very high level of awareness and an uncanny ability to sift through mountains of information, which every student is not capable of. This most definitely does not mean that the student is useless and will be a dismal failure in life. There are so many avenues worth exploring nowadays that engineering and medicine are passé.

Thirdly, the student should conscientiously go about his current syllabus of the school and later think about clearing the competitive exams. Riding on two tigers makes life unbearable for both the student and the parents. He should make knowledge a priority rather than marks. I have seen umpteen cases of very high scoring students not knowing a fig outside their books. This most definitely adversely affects his later career life.

Finally life is a journey of discovering oneself. We are a society too caught up in books and curriculum and forgot in the process that it takes a correct attitude to live life to its full. If only getting high marks were an indication of being hugely successful, look up the lives of Mr. Dhirubhai Ambani and Mr Sunil Mittal. Mr Ambani of course will not be able to answer your queries right now, but Mr. Mittal would be very frank about his academic achievements. The watchword in life is ATTITUDE. It will take good care of your life if it is correct.


4 comments:

`~>>j@HnVi<<~` said...

My PYAARUEST family member has now given me the zillionth reason to be proud of him by writing such hard-hitting , amazingly realistic and extremely expressive pieces.....You are Incomparable !!

RAMACHANDRAN said...

Full Marks !!! Yet Again, Robin !

Couldn't agree with your candid remarks. If A=1.....Z=26, ATTITUDE when calculated mathematically = 100.
So, Whatever one does in life should be done with ATTITUDE! Success will be his for sure !!!

Look at yourself & of course many others around us for proof !!!!

Shivam said...

Life is what we see ....
Living is what we do.....

And im quite confident uve mastered both.
Hats off 2 u Sir....Keep up the gud work.

Punkhuri said...

had i been capable i wudnt think twice before givin u devine powers to improve the world around u...but i no its useless...coz ur so much better off without them. im plannin to rename u sir...mr. inspiration...dats wat u r for mr now. after readin ur words n interactin wid u my goal is so much clearer now...i no wat kind of a person i want to be...

this one is a piece that i would suggest every parent, student n teacher to read n not only read but also understand. bein a student myself i feel tht ppl load u wid gr8 expectations even unknowingly at tyms...n wat workin under such burden is...ask any student..they will tell u...

waitin for the nex piece sir!!