THE STORY OF THE RIGGED EDUCATION SYSTEM

We everyday lament the fact that India is facing a very big problem of unemployed youth. A youth that comprises majorly of skilled workers has to sit home due to either the capsizing economy or shortage of jobs, a direct consequence of the former. I well am not interested in telling what could be done to improve the situation, who am I to tell? But share some personal observations that I feel are just overlooked, might be the key to the problem. Children are taught Science, Maths and languages till they are in primary school, so as to provide them with a basic platform in order to be able to embrace the forthcoming education. Say grade 6 onward, the kid has a consciousness of what he/she is studying. Class 9 onward they understand the difference between, physics, maths and biology. Class 10 is the class when they are ‘supposed’ to have a fair idea of their calling. Class 11 and 12 are the most crucial years of their lives in which the best joke becomes the irony of life. A guy in class 12 asks his friend to suicide as they could not handle the studies. The other guy replies, rather sensibly, that they would have to again go through 14 years of education in the next life.

Barring the Convent schools and a few schools that do pay special emphasis on the English of the children, the amount of money being spent on the education being exorbitant yet unavoidable, we find children struggling with the basic sentence formation. They can’t even explain concepts in their own language, concepts at which they might be terrific. One always gets the sub text ‘Ponzi scheme’  on seeing ‘English Medium’. Later, such kids have to join, personality development classes to be able to present themselves in interviews for job, let alone working at a multi-national.

Some stats I read, India churns out 15 million engineers, every year!EVERY YEAR! I do get the point that India is an emerging economy, it needs people with a scientific bent of mind, but what do you do with those who don’t get jobs, don’t they add up into the list of dependents. Every parent in India thinks,  their SON will do engineering from IIT, secure himself a big package and they can go to Char Dham Yatra (Pilgrimage), OK may be marrying him first might be on their To-Do list as well. But will someone tell them that out of every 100 IITians, only 42 secure a job and only a small percentage get the coveted ones. It makes you think, are we living in a hoax? And the biggest competition is your neighbor’s son or daughter. The coaching centres have become, such a fulfilling business, every Tom, Dick and Harry can open one for himself, especially if you are an IITian yourself. Let me tell you something from personal experience, IITians are the worst teachers ever, WORST. They have this weird idea that every one at their centre has to have a brain like him. But then doesn’t it seem strange, cracking one of the toughest exams in the country, passing every semester, not with flying but at least grounded colors and then ending up being a teacher to create more and more of such examples.

People actually curse the CCE system, say that it has made students lethargic as they get free marks. For me if the implementation of the system is undertaken properly it would ensure that children grow up to be more mature and level headed than they actually are.

I realised that the Physics for class XI-XII is highly mathematical, which Physics always is, duh. But the Medical students have to study the same physics as Engineering aspirants, but by what measure is that correct? Many, actually join medical to leave Maths but it still finds it’s way to them. Then again, inclusion of chapters like vectors and 3-D in class 12 syllabus and logarithmic differentiation, commerce students would love to throw that book down the drain.

Then again, I filled the form for JEE MAINS, as if I care, and paid 500 Rupees for the form. I was looking at other forms like Narsee Monjee BBA, and one form costs you Rupees 1600, more than triple of it. It makes me feel that the entire god damned education system is rigged to make you an engineer, and with only 16000 seats available for 10 Lakh aspirants, your best chance is that one exam, and the less fortunate ones, who might not be able to afford the fee for that BBA form will be forced to go to some dingy little institute and pin their hopes to getting selected from the campus. How ironical is that situation when you monthly salary is almost equal to the money you gave as tuition fee in your college.

More so the next thing they know after IIT, if they know anything at all is, IIM. If you had to take up commerce, why the heck waste precious 2 years of your life preparing for cracking the entrance exam and then 4 more pursuing a degree that would just qualify you as a graduate. Silly, isn’t it?

If someone wants to do something ‘Hatke’ (different), in this country they have to think a 100 times. My best friend, philosopher (at least she aces the lunacy levels required to be one), my saving grace, wants to be writer, the one person who actually persuaded me to write my story of the fictitious characters of Mira and Daniel. Her sense of understanding the nuances of English are impeccable, though when it comes to Hindi she is pretty lost, took half a year to persuade herself and one whole in persuading her parents. Makes me wonder why, why does it have to be so cruel on those who want to be a bit creative and have the knack for it?

People have been making through this system for years now, going through the same grueling routine, but for me it has large scope for changes.

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ONCE UPON A FAIRY TALE: CHAPTER 11

CHAPTER – 11

” I beg your pardon, I heard you want me to marry your daughter”. ” You heard it correct young man, that is exactly what I want you to do”. ” I am sorry I can’t do that”. ” Well then I can’t help you as well, Louise always dreamt of being your wife and as a good father I am going to give her what she wants”. ” I am not a doll that you can gift her and I am ready to do anything else but this”. ” I believe your mother will also approve of this match rather than that twinky of yours”. ” Mr. Armston, she is not a twinky and I love her and the last thing on my mind is whether my mom approves of it or not”. “Well then you should start thinking about it as well, you are thinking with your heart right now think with your mind, my offer is still open”.

Daniel stormed out of the office. He reached his office, on the table was a photo of Mira and him looking at each other, into each other’s eyes, another one of her laughing,  both of these captured at the right moments. He couldn’t do this to her, she loved and cared for him so much. Then Alfred’s voice resonated in his ears, “Think with your mind”. No that would be wrong , morally wrong. But he had already been bad to his father, should he do this to his mother, he of course was aware of his mother’s marked disdain for Mira, but he could manage it, couldn’t he?

_____________________

Surprisingly it felt good to be back in New York and being among piles of files and spending the Sunday with Rook and Evelyn. Everything had taken the hit of the low stock prices and they seemed to be coping with the after effects. Especially, being away from the drab ambience in London was also good. She had also reduced her talks with Daniel so as to give him some time to get over the truth by himself.

It was Sunday again and as usual she was at Jamesson’s, the door opened by Evelyn. ” Hi”, said both. She hugged Rook and he asked “How is he keeping up?”, “Well he is fine as far as I know but he hasn’t let go of the black garb, moreover, I have not been able to reach him since this morning”. ” We both never work on Sundays”. ” Did you try his land line? “, “He has one?, I never actually knew that”, said Mira. ” Take the number”. She took it down and tried it. It connected in the first go. It was picked up by Mr Wayne, the Butler, “Hello Mr Wayne, Mira this side, I have been trying to reach Daniel since the morning, is he at home?”, “Oh yes mam he is”. ” Then could I talk to him”. ” In a few minutes mam, he is having lunch with his fiance”. ” Fiance, if this is a joke, then it is a very bad one”. ” No mam, it was all over the papers, he is engaged to Ms Louise Armston”.

(catch the story from the beginning on the ONCE UPON A FAIRY TALE PAGE).

ONCE UPON A FAIRY TALE: CHAPTER 10

CHAPTER – 10

The funeral was simple, but the aura of William Westland seemed to have brightened death itself. Mira had thought that the court room experiences had made her immune to cries and shouts but seeing Daniel cry in the car had broken her inside. They had gone home and Mira managed to tuck him into bed. She began to leave but Daniel wouldn’t let her, he wanted her on her side that night and every night since then. Today was the funeral, something that Daniel couldn’t do himself. On the face of it, she never came about but behind scenes she took care of the Westland, both the dead and the alive. He was now the man of the house and everyone had now started looking up to him for the smallest of the decisions.

Today, at the funeral, though he tried to keep a brave face but the death of his father had shaken his insides. He also realised how transient life is and how silly had he been to wait for so long to propose to Mira. Lost in his thoughts he didn’t see his father’s friend, Alfred Armston, coming towards him, “I am really sorry for your loss son, he was a dear friend, but don’t worry I will stand by you, you need any help just tell me”. He just nodded in acknowledgement and went back to looking over the sea of faces that had come to pay homage to his father. But Alfred wasn’t done “Did you see the newspapers today? “, Daniel’s expression clearly said that he hadn’t. “The stock prices are at an all time low”. This slightly alarmed Daniel but he quickly composed himself and said, something he wasn’t doing much, “That was to be expected, Dad was a stalwart of his field”. “Yes but let’s hope the situation won’t last for long, remember what I had said”.

That evening Daniel and Mira dined in complete silence, he asked later, I heard that the stocks are pretty low right now”. ” Daniel, you employ thousands of people who are worthy of taking care of such problems,  so let it go”. ” I can’t let go Mira, every minute I let go I am disappointing Dad, I wasn’t there when he died so please let me take care of something that he left me”, Daniel practically thundered and Mira looked at him meekly. “I am sorry, I really am but just tell me what is wrong”, “Yes, sir”, Mira said . He got in touch with his CFO and came to know that investors were pulling out because they weren’t sure of the new boy who just has a nice degree to show and not much of work experience and so if the stint continued, he might be in desperate need of money.

He sat like a lame duck waiting for it’s chance to go to the butchery. He understood for the first time that shiny degrees weren’t enough to survive in such a competition and suddenly found his investors justified in pulling out but he couldn’t let that happen to the so many people that worked for him and he now decided to form some alliances that were initially not thought of by him.

Daniel Westland knocked at the door of the office of the Director of The British Bank, the door opened at Daniel saw the burly, pot bellied, balding man welcome him, “I had been expecting you for a long time Daniel”, he smiled at him and took the chair offered to him, “Times have been tough Alfred”. ” So tell me how can I help you?”. ” You know what I need, I need capital to run my company”. ” That is something I will willingly do, but I have a condition”. That was something Daniel had pretty much expected, you couldn’t build such an empire without such a shrewd sense of business. ” I am all ears go ahead”.

” Marry my daughter Louise”.