“Plants are shaped by cultivation, humans by education”. This is a very crucial saying that fits today’s scenario perfectly. “Why education?”, a layman might ask. Well, to answer this question, we need to look at different fields in today’s world, all of which are essential for the proper functioning of society. Engineering, management, politics, medicine etc. play a major role in increasing the productivity of the nation. Thus, education is a necessity that mankind needs in order to develop its skills and impart knowledge and values.
The current Indian government is concerned with providing primary education to the masses along with certain subsidies/facilities for higher education. We are also witnessing the entry of a few private educational institutions that are helping to speed up the process. I would like to highlight certain necessities and effects of education.
Education broadens the horizon of one’s thoughts, views and opinions. It is a very important for civilizing a society, It opens one’s eyes to different situations and scenarios to teach how the world works, how drastic social situations can be overcome and so on. To summarize, we can say that education is of utmost importance to any nation.
Especially considering the fact that our nation is still in its stages of development, it is quite central to the survival, growth, and productivity of the nation. Thus, all investments that are made into education should be accepted as future success, rather than a waste of resources.But, there are various issues and challenges faced by the Indian education system.
Expenditure on Education
The primary challenge faced by every government regarding education is the issue of expenditure. Especially in a highly populated country like India, estimating the expenditure required for education is quite a task. As a very high part of the country (400 million out of 1.2 billion people) is living in an impoverished state, it becomes difficult for the Indian government to plan and execute its plans on such a large scale. Statistically speaking, the Indian government spent 4.3% of the public GDP on education in the year 2000; this reduced to 3.3% in the year 2012.
The second most important issue that needs to be addressed is the issue of infrastructure. One of the most important reasons for the low utilization of capacity in public schools and colleges is the inability of the Indian government to provide adequate physical infrastructure to the people. Active participation of private sector industries in the establishment of schools/colleges has to be ensured for proper infrastructural development.
Quality of Education
Finally, we have another very important issue, that is, the quality of education provided in the country, at stake. As it is, we are living in a very competitive world. The 21st century has proven to be quite remarkable in bringing out various new innovations and developments, so far. What the government needs to do now, is to ensure that proper quality of education is being provided at the grassroots level. The category of children below the age of 14 should be focused on as without understanding the basic fundamentals, moving on to various in-depth specifications would become a very difficult task.
The right way to work regarding this issue would be to take examples from various education systems, in terms of how they function. The education system should be re-engineered to focus more on providing good quality information, rather than huge quantities of it. As the country is gradually growing in terms of economy, various reforms can be brought in the field of education to provide a holistic form of education which will ensure the speeding up of the development of the country overall.
In today’s scenario, education is the one of the most important resources required for the survival of mankind in the long run. Without education, any society would live in the dark. As man has evolved from his early stages, he has accumulated a certain amount of knowledge that is crucial in the process of development; the knowledge that has been accumulated has to be passed on to the new generations. To achieve this goal, the Indian government has to undertake various major reforms. The entire Indian education system needs to be re-engineered as a whole in order to efficiently reap its benefits. India should try to take a leaf from the Western hemisphere to promote inclusive growth.
-Contributed by Atreyee Chakraborthy
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