Right to Answer, but where is the Right to Ask ?

In the last month we saw the Right of Education being passed in the parliament, a big and an important step in the country’s growth. The provisions and the legalities need not concern us at this point of time. The thing to note is the fact that although it give children the right to education, the question is whether the “education” actually reaches the children or not and that I think is far more important than just making up legislations and then not working on them. Sadly, the Indian polity has a documented propensity to make legislations and not have anything concrete to state afterwards. Look at NREGA for example.

Leaving NREGA  aside and coming to RoE; it is a great step forward, but the fact remains that it cannot solve the problem that plagues our education system. Being witness to the education system and seeing it go through many changes, some for the better, some for the worse; our education system does not give us the privilege and the oppurtunity to grow and establish a liking for one subject. When you do like one subject, the others get lagged behind and then you start working on the others. Due to this, your liking to the original subject dwindles. And by the time you pass out of school, you are utterly confused

Innovation : A Holy Cow?

The other fact about the education system is that you hardly see any young innovators and inventors. The spirit of invention and innovations stems from asking one of the most important questions through human history -WHY? Only when you search for the causes do you evolve and undertake innovations. And here lies another problem- We dont have the Right to Ask. The fact is that, as many of us would have seen, whenever we have a problem to ask the teachers are either unaware or discard them with utter disdain and characterize them as the students “aggressive and indisciplined behaviour”. The right to ask is the ultimate Holy Cow of Indian education. My personal belief is that only when you guarantee a pupil’s right to ask do you actually enable him to use his mind. The education system is very characteristic of what the Indian Polity actually stands for- that we knoiw better than you and we take all decisions for you.

This is the attitude of most teachers from the old school of thought. They feel that whenever the student questions something, he is either pestering him or just wants to bide the classes’ time. Their “we are more experienced than you ” and “we know more than you” causes them to call the present generation an aggressive and a brash generation. They just don’t seem to respect the possibility that the person across the room might have a brain too. Its characteristic of the hubris and the hypocrisy that makes us Indians.

Coming to the question of innovation. Only when you ask questions will you come to acknowledge the beauty of nature and for that matter the complexities of any subject or issue. Only when Newton asked why the apple falls to the ground, did we come to know the beauty of gravity and its all-pervasive nature. The beauty of innovation and the process that leads to the innovation is bound to be marred with difficulties and obstacles. This is where another aspect of the Indian psyche comes to the fore.

In a recent Jug Suraiya article in the ToI, he says that the Indian government develops cold feet whenever it has to actually “do” something. He calls it the “can’t do” attitude of the sarkari system. And this is exactly the problem facing Indian education today.  The can’t do attitude also plagues the indian scientific establishment. What they fail to take into account is the fact that in the process of developing something, if you do actually get marred with difficulties and problems, they serve as guide to the people who want to innovate further- the 100 or the 200 ways that one shouldn’t take for the development for so and so product. Even when you don’t innovate you teach the whole of the human population the wrong ways to do something. The advantages are for all to see.

Where is the Right to Ask?

That brings us to the original question: the students right to ask. When we talk about bringing education to the most lowest classes of the society, it should aimed at creating an informed and literate populace and shouldn’t be passed away as another measure to garner votes. Even the most poor and destitute have the right to live, the right to education and most importantly the right to ask.

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Published in: Uncategorized on April 28, 2010 at 4:38 pm  Leave a Comment  

An Interview with the Head Boy

Council(n) : A group which meticulously manages minutes but wastes hours

The Students Council has been in power in NGF country for over a year now. Fascism has reigned supreme with the council taking complete control.  Below are excerpts from an interview the Head Boy, the leader of the council. The name of the reporter (who has since been missing) has been with-held by the Council, citing Security issues.

Here’s the interview:

Reporter: Tell me about your rise to power…

Head Boy: (with a sly smile) Like the rest of the Council, I was also drafted as PREFECT by the administration. That was hard work. Then on 20th July ’08, the unsuspecting populace of this country elected me to lead the newly formed Council, overthrowing the earlier Council (laughs hysterically)

R: The Council’s new measures have drawn flak from the people, that you’re completely disallowing indiscipline and other interesting activities.

HB: The Council has taken many drastic steps, which even includes manning the corridor between periods. The reduced crime rates are testimony to the Council’s Commitment. The people should know that its all for the greater good.

R: Reports come in everyday about your cruel Secretary of Discipline, Archit Mittal.

HB: (interrupts) The Council couldn’t have done it without him. Terrorizing people into submission – hes been critical in the smooth functioning. As for the tag of “cruel”, yes he’s haughty and gloats about his position but then who doesn’t. He’s mellowed down a bit nowadays, don’t you think?

R: What are you doing about people bunking their classes?

HB: Council Decree No. 329, Section 3, Part A, Clause 2 clearly states that ‘Any form of bunking without official reasons shall be reported immediately and the Defaulters shall be sent for Processing. That people still bunk in spite of the council’s best intentions is SAD.. as for the Council Members, most of them are on Official Duty and everyone, I mean everyone is entitled to report (oh.. I hate this term) ‘a bunking Council Member’.

R: Comment on the duties that you and the Head Girl and the Vices have to perform.

HB: Apart from ordering everyone around and escorting chief guest when they grace our country?

R: Yes.

HB: Well, checking whether the rest of the Council is up to the mark is our job.

R: And who checks you ?

HB: We know that there is Higher Power who keeps us in check. But most of the mistakes are ignored unless serious.

R: A lot of events have also been organized this year, many boring, many extravagantly exciting, ….

HB: The Council has to be thanked for making the Events a grand successIin most cases)

R: Any plans for next year?

HB: The Council, through its sources, has come to know about the Higher Power’s intentions to elect a new Council next year. But no one can match the work that we put in or the control we brought forth in the near future. We’ll try to convince the people to re-elect us again and the dissidents can always be taken away for Processing.

P.S. Propaganda is the art of persuading the people to believe what you don’t believe yourself

Published in: on April 26, 2010 at 4:12 pm  Comments (1)  

The Underground Press

This is just a primer about the people who do not know about New Green Field School. Actually this is a series of articles that me and my friends: Sandeep and Reshma as a section in our school magazine( of which I was the chief editor mind you). But they never saw the light of day because of the “holy patrons” of our school. So enjoy reading and please comment on them too.

Published in: Uncategorized on April 26, 2010 at 3:38 pm  Leave a Comment  

Tips and Tricks

To remain in the good books of a teacher, certain rules are to be followed. So here is a list of things to do and not to do for the novices of the trade

DO’S:

  1. Keep your mouth shut when asked to.
  2. Concentrate on whatever your teacher tells you. Even if you dont get what she’s trying to explain, you can always practise Grammar correction
  3. Always face the teacher when talking to someone and keep a lookout for subtle lines of irritation on the teacher’s face. That’s your cue to shut up.
  4. Keep your work complete (at least in theory) and please keep it legible.
  5. Ask your doubts, however idiotic or baseless they may seem. Then th teacher will atleast include you in her “Inquistive Children Welfare Trust” list.

DONT’S:

  1. Make blank faces when asked something
  2. Forget to do your homework. That is the only proof you are studying. And please keep it away from the dog.
  3. Wander around in the corridor until completely sure that you have ample permission from a teacher or higher authority to do so.
  4. Look away from a teacher when she’s speaking. Not even when there is Godzilla outside the window. An enraged teacher is deadlier.
  5. Forget to wish a teacher. Atleast stand up if you don’t want to open your mouth. How the teacher reacts helps gauge her mood. Adapt your behaviour accordingly.

Adapted from

Getting through School with Your Head                                                                                on Your Shoulders –  For Dummies”


Published in: on April 26, 2010 at 3:32 pm  Leave a Comment  

Shifting Sands in NGF Country

The natural beauty of our NGF Country has been exemplified in many poems and soliloques, created across generations of patriots. That the maximum lifespan of each citizen is 14 years doesnt seem to bother anyone. With an almost 100% literate population, having an intellectual gossip at every corner is no big deal in our country. But our country has changed over the years. New monuments have come up in place of old ones, many relics uncovered, many lost. One glaring example is the discovery of a stage that had been mentioned in ancient texts but never seen until recently.

Certain things have also improved over the years. The Grand Trunk Corridor, connecting the Higher Power’s abode to every class and section of this country, has been tiled, with clean restrooms at every corner, ensuring a refreshing journey for the citizens when being taken for processing. The wild tribes of the higher reaches of the country have also been tame by the missionaries of education. The grass flows green in the great plains, where citizens come to play everyday. Foreign trips to more developed countries with strange names(fun n food village duh!) have also become common now-a-days. NGF country is on the way to become the most powerful countries ever to exist. The baton will keep on changing but the legacy continues…….

Published in: on April 26, 2010 at 2:29 pm  Comments (1)  

Hello

Well just for the sake of it I am writing the second “first” post because my stupid internet browser had to conch off today. Doesn’t matter. just keep looking out for me.

Published in: on April 26, 2010 at 12:01 pm  Leave a Comment