Take a ride across Azamgarh U.P, go through all its little villages, small market places, the two things you will definitely find are- Shops selling cheap country liquor and Schools. Schools, with and without – rooftops, tables and chairs, proper lighting, teaching staff, etc. But yes, they have students. Everyone is sending their children to schools now. The level of learning, the methods used are however, very depressing.
What I have observed is that neither parents nor the schools wish to give up the old school of teaching. Yet along with it they want their children to become doctors and engineers too. They want the kids to study the holy scriptures, their mother tongues, and begin with it right from year one. Along with that, also learn English, math, science, and everything else that will be necessary for big degrees. This leads to the child having three to four languages along with math, science, etc from the very first year and I mean – Kindergarten! And in this process the child studies a lot and learns very little. A fear of learning is created through the weight of the bag and reinforced through spanking, that’s a norm.
All I could think of, after visiting schools and looking around is, “The realization that education is important and a necessity has reached here before the skill to teach and educate.”