Future of the nation

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Editor – S K Khurana Children are the future of nation, which all of us would agree but do we really know how many children are educated in our society in reality. It is estimated that in India, 4 percent of our children never go to school; more than 50% do not complete their primary schools while 80-85 percent do not complete secondary school. That leaves us with mere 15-20 percent children who finish schools and go for higher studies.

Also, if we look at the hygienic and nutrition condition of these children who never go to school or leave their school in between, it would be a pathetic sight. Not only this, lot of talent goes waste as there are very few schools and institutes which encourage sports and extra-curricular activities. Now, are we talking about this future of the nation?

Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan or Education for All mission started off on a welcome note and the literacy level has risen after that, but there have been several issues in the system. The teaching methodologies have been the same for over a couple of years while world over alternate routes have been adopted, which are in sync with the changing environment.

We all have seen the glitches in our education system and few visionaries have already started amendments. The changes have started but at a micro level. Textbooks are updated, keeping in mind the today’s needs. For example, let’s take the example of the alphabet books, where most of these have images of various birds and animals which are not found in India. Now a three-year-old child might just not relate to those pictures. Thus, there is a need to have more reader-friendly books, keeping in mind the age of the child.

Children book publishers like Pratham Books, Apple Publishing, NBT, Dreamland, Tara Books, BPI, Macaw Books, etc are doing their bit but there is still a long way to go. New teaching methodologies like Educomp, Repro Rapples, 4CLearning, Tata Interactive, etc are making inroads. Similarly, events like NBT Book Fairs, Bookaroo, Comic Con, etc are also trying their best to engage children. But majority of children still need to be benefited from these solutions.

Books will, by far, be the largest tool for education. Let’s be the torch-bearers for the change we all would like to see in our education system starting with kids of our nation!

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