According to Swami Vivekananda, "education is the manifestation of perfection already present in a man".
Education – what a huge meaning it has in our lives. Sadly, the meaning is reduced to becoming our source of bread and butter – nothing more, nothing less. Is this what education stands for in our life? Isn't education a way to make life better?
I believe that education is not an accessory to life but it is a necessity. Education is a process that brings about the full development of the inner being of man.
It brings positive changes in behavior by developing the body-mind-spirit of the individual. It awakens the senses, by stimulating the mind and intellect. Knowledge acquired makes one self-confident.
The purpose of education is to develop character, achieve human excellence, develop good habits, destroy falsehood, and advance in the search for truth. It teaches mutual respect by inculcating ethical behavior.
But can certificate-based education play these roles in the formation of a developed nation?
A modern scientific education system is a prerequisite for building a developed nation. The more developed the nation's education system is, the more advanced the nation gets.
No nation can ever reach the pinnacle of development without education. Change is possible only through education. From primary education to higher education, our country has crossed milestones in the rate of education. The economic development of Bangladesh is accelerating due to the progress and spread of education.
Nonetheless, despite its contribution, education in our country has become more about competition.
Competing with someone is manageable. But the constant comparison is being drilled into the minds of innocent children. I believe it negatively impacts their personality as adults.
Constant comparison can lead to the loss of individuality. If a child is constantly told to do better than others, while being compared to another child who is supposedly better than them at something, they may attempt to become like the person they are being compared to.
A child's individuality ceases to exist that way.
Without variations in personalities and skills, it is difficult for a person to develop themselves, because if your main aim is to be like everyone else, you will never know what your potential is, or how great your qualities are.
We are in fact chasing GPA 5. Parents think that if the child gets a GPA 5, he/she will be 'successful'.
But let me ask you - what is success? Holding a paper that gives you society-approved grades?
Of course, that's necessary but shouldn't we also focus on humanistic knowledge as well?
I have noticed that the knowledge students are getting from textbooks is only in the hope of getting a certificate or a good job. But that is not the purpose of education; applying the acquired knowledge to oneself is real education.
Knowing yourself creates ideal values in you and extends them to society. The child may have wanted to sleep a little more but before dawn, the child is being prepared to go to school with a bag of books on his or her shoulders. This is exactly what is happening in almost every school in Bangladesh!
Comparison between children can instigate one child to copy the other. It may potentially contribute to a decrease in the concerned child's creativity and ability to actively address difficult situations.
Their need to think for themselves on how to approach a situation is replaced by an already laid out plan on how someone else approached the situation in question.
And you cannot even blame them for being like this. Even adults can follow in someone else's footsteps if they feel as though they are incapable of thinking outside the box. So it is natural for these young minds to develop their mindset like that, if you force them down that path.
At an age when they are supposed to laugh and play, we are burdening them with books. Does it do any good?
I don't understand why these certificates are required for Playgroup, Nursery, and Kindergarten. It disrupts the proper mental development of children.
Humans have become machines these days, emotionless robots. Family ties have loosened. They are not getting time to talk to each other from the same family. Social bonds are not what they used to be.
By obtaining the certificate, we become teachers, doctors, engineers, lawyers, and office officials. Owning huge houses and cars, but not accommodating elderly parents.
So what is the point of this certificate when humanity is disappearing?
Real education plays a role in the building of a nation and the advancement of civilisation. But the current certificate-based education system is making the nation spineless.
Corruption is prevalent at every level. This is because we are not internalising what we are learning. That is, we are not being educated in real education.
To conclude, we need to be educated, not just to hold a degree in our hands, but to acquire the skills and knowledge around us. This will eventually help to build a beautiful nation as well. You have to start from the basic level. Because if the foundation is strong, it doesn't break easily. Moreover, moral, social, family, and work-oriented education should be emphasised.
The creative and innovative abilities of the brain should be developed and used in real life. If human values are practiced more and more in educational institutions - violence, corruption, class discrimination, and caste discrimination will be eliminated, and a beautiful welfare state will be created. Let us make it happen together for our future children!
The author is the Lecturer of English, Shaheed Muktijoddha Smriti B. M. College, Chuadanga.