Where is our education system heading to?
A 13 year old boy threatens his teacher and her daughter with rape. Another boy from the same school, who is a year junior to him, asks his teacher out for a candlelight dinner and sex. Another student shoots his teacher. Why? The teacher has reprimanded him for not getting sufficient marks in a subject. Just last year, a senior murdered a little boy of his school, on the pretext that he wanted the parent-teacher meeting postponed. These incidents have left the country in a state of shock and disbelief. Where are we heading to? In fact, where is our education system heading to? Who is to be blamed? It is heartening to see such incidents occur, and since I too worked as a teacher (as the head of the department in a reputed college in my city), I can empathize with the teachers.
Our country has always held the guru-sishya tradition in high respect. In the good old days, the guru was treated with reverence, obedience, and respect. The guru was worshiped and looked upon as God. The reason being, the education was based on values. Value-based education was imparted to the students. Values such as love, respect, dedication, and perseverance were taught to the students. Today, our values have gone berserk. We call ourselves modern. We do not promote the values that were once the bedrock of our society, fearing that we may be labelled as ‘traditional’ or ‘backward’. But what use is modernity when one human does not value the life of the other?
The word ‘technology’ is definitely luring. In this mad race of being the hi-fi schools of the city, the schools and the management are hell-bent on focussing on technology-based learning forgetting the value-based teaching and learning. Even parents are keen to send their kids to such schools because they want their kids to be ahead of their times, not realizing that these students again will one day become teachers who would groom the gen-next. So the onus lies on the schools to impart value-based education to its students.
Value-based education is the need of the hour. An approach to teaching that works with values, value-based education promotes the harmonious growth of the physical, mental, social (interpersonal), emotional, and spiritual qualities inherent in a child. It is a teaching framework in which values are taught explicitly in classroom and implicitly by example. The framework consists of teaching tools and techniques. Such framework nurtures the development of good character, deep thinking, altruistic / humanitarian behavior, and inculcation of positive human values such as respect, honesty, compassion, care, humility, responsibility, valuing self and the others, and so on, leading to the wellbeing of the student-teacher relationship. The student-teacher relationships become more trusting and the students feel a great sense of connectivity and belongingness with their teachers.