Problems with schools.

Educationists the world over prescribe to gauge a productive and successful education system a litmus test, whether students dislike to leave or miss their school, or not. Sadly, schools in our part of the world have badly failed in providing students with a motherly cosy milieu.

At the announcement of summer vacation, the jubilant students leaving school remind us of the whining students when they creep towards school at the start of the day. Scenes of crying children who resist being parted from their parents at the school gate in the morning are frequent. In nursery or playgroup classes, children cling to their mothers. They sob; they hiccup; they weep their throats hoarse. Teachers struggle to cleave between mothers and their kids. But the same children are beside themselves when they leave school. These two divergent tell-tale faces at the start and the end of the school session must urge us to locate the reasons behind their gloom or glee.

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Shakespeare in his poem Seven Ages of Man (which is actually an excerpt from his comedy As You Like It), describes the several roles that men play in their lives. The second role is of the whining schoolboy who walks at a snail's pace towards school.

'Then the whining schoolboy with his satchel/ And shining morning face, creeping like snail/ Unwillingly to school.'

The critics reveal that during Elizabeth's period, schoolboys would have had to memorise lengthy Latin speeches for school. It is easy to understand why a schoolboy might hurry off to school in the morning, knowing a long tedious day of memorization work awaited him. In our context, replace Latin with English, and it becomes crystal clear when a student has to read his books in a language which is not his mother language or not even his national language, wouldn't he cringe while going to school?

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The other demotivating factor is the unfriendly milieu of school. The stern looks of teachers, the fear of being punished for not doing homework and the bullying class-fellows, all prove a deterrent for the students. Being unable to name their fears at such a tender age, they cry and drag their feet going to school. Parents use force and punishment to send their kids to school without bothering to fathom the reason. It sometimes develops in students the habit of lying to parents and teachers for avoiding school.

Parents and...

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