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I work in an MNC Software Development firm, where we have to speak in English with the clients as our architect,developers are from across the globe.
i studied in a convent, where native language is spoken most…The moment i stepped out of my native place for my masters, that’s where i got exposure to speak fluently in English…A
“I studied in that school and I came out fine, so why are you not recommending that school to my child?”
“I studied in a non English medium school till class 12 and only in the graduation I started to learn English. And I am perfectly fine now. So how does English or non- English school matter?”
“I studied in a small city where English was taught from class 5! A colleague of mine was all through in an English medium school, but I am doing better than him? So how does English school matter anyways?”
If you have any of the above questions or similar kind of questions for me then do read on.
English medium schools are favorite schools of all urban Indians. One the most common request I receive from the parents on my blog is to suggest a good English medium school for their children.
Agree with all those who ask me the above type of questions. Yes you have turned out fine and awesome! Good luck to all of you and may you prosper more each year. 🙂
A small questions though?
“When did you join class nursery and when did you finish your schooling i.e. class 12 to be precise?”
Let’s say you are 30 year old. So you would have joined class 1 at the age of 6! That would in 1990.
Your child is going to join his class 1 today in 2014. So that means you did your class 24 years back!
And if you are 40 year old, then you would have done your class 1, approximately 34 years back!
24 years to 34 years back is the range of years when most parents went to class 1 and have these doubts in their minds. Fair enough.
Another question to you my dear parents.
“Is the education system in India, exactly same back in your days and today?”
So back in 1980 to 1990, when you did your class 1, do you imagine the condition, quality, levels in the education system of India has not progressed at all?
If your answer is yes, then maybe I am not the right person to guide you at all and will request you stop reading my education related articles from today!
If you have think that Indian education system has improved or changed from 1980, 1990 to 2014 then do continue reading ahead.
Before I start explaining more on education system, I will ask you more about couple of very different questions, just to drive my point through your heads.
“What kind of restaurants did you go to when you were young? Do you still go to the same restaurants?”
If your answer is yes, then again stop reading and I am not the right person to guide you.
“Did you go to the same school your father or mother went to?”
If your answer is YES, then please, I apologize for wasting your time as I am sure I am not the right guide to your child and your family when it comes to education.
I am sure a few of you are really getting furious. You are getting angry that what the hell is the connection between these questions and your child’s education or a school? Infact, there is a form that all parents have to fill in before they meet me or talk with me. It’s called the “Find the Best School” form, that actually is a lengthy set of questionnaires and makes them think about many factors about education and helps me understand the family better. I can sense from a few of the response that they do not understand the value of that form or that they think there is no relevance of any questions I ask them to the schools they want to choose for their children.
Honestly, if you were not reading my blog, it would not even bother you. But the fact that you are reading my blogs and have built immense trust and respect towards my research and my thoughts, gives me the idea that you are not one of those parents who consider education and future life of your children as an easy idea that will take its own course with no thoughtful brain storming.
The very fact that the readers of my blog are really awesome and concerned parents, makes me want to give them my best all the time in whatever form I can.
So the intention of asking these questions is very crystal clear to me and to you too it will be very soon.
The intention is to make you understand that the world has changed drastically in last 24 to 34 years! Yes! It’s 24 years since you did your class 1. All boards of education in India, be it the state board, CBSE or ICSE have been working their a$$ off to deliver better content, better and relevant course to all the children. Agreed that there is still quite a lot to catch up as the world is about to take a double somersault with respect to the education system in their schools and we have not even gotten upright!
So if you see the world is changing really very fast. It’s no more “Saat samundar paar!” Parents do not cry out their hearts when they see off their children at the airport for any project work or any stay! Parents today are aware that with the Skype calls over the internet, economical cell phone calls, face time on Apple gadgets, free sms and voice messaging over whatsapp and similar apps, connecting with the loved ones is only a matter of will and no longer an effort or a dream.
So when there are children going and coming from various countries in exchange programs, kids from India going abroad to pursue schooling or graduation, there’s one very important thing that is enabling and facilitating all these global connection rather easily. And you guessed it right, it’s the language we choose. Fortunately we still have 2-3 languages being taught in our education system. We learn our nationally aaproved official language easily in all boards. I respect our official language immensely. It’s also my mother tongue. But I wonder why our national and state boards did not consider to encourage teaching only in Hindi! Ok, the British enforced English, but after we got our freedom, why did the Government not enforce Hindi? Do you know why? I am guessing, because, when it comes to pursuing any graduate course or any higher study, we do not find text books and course materials written in Hindi. And even if they are, I wonder how easy it would be to really understand them now! (I really do not think the scope of this article is to explain why Hindi did not prosper in higher studies or in India.)
We also learn one of the vernacular languages depending on the state from where we do our schooling. Do you find any higher education text books in any language other than English? If you do find in a meager lot, do you find anything more to refer to?
And lastly the most important connecting factor with the other nationalities and states people is again English. British are cursed to have left behind their language, but if you read the state of education in India before British, you will start to appreciate at least one good thing was the starting of the education in India that we all are today able to read and write anything other than the religious ideas or the Vedas & the scriptures that too was limited to only a certain community. Again you can read this article to get more awareness on the first school that was stated by the British in the year 1835.
When you started your career, everyone else in this country was also coming from the very same background. Similar types of families, similar types of schools i.e. mostly non-English medium and would work hard to learn and catch up with the language, English. Many did it easily with awesome results but a majority cannot comprehend the language easily. They translate each sentence they read in their mother tongue and then understand the real meaning or the gist of the context.
The world is really competitive today and I do not see any change in the near future when your children will be entering the corporate or the business world.
As a parent what is the one wish we all must cherish. “We want our children to be happy and confident to face any challenge in their lives.”
We have faced our challenges brilliantly. Now in order to make our kids do the same we need to provide them the right environment conducive to the future success and not past age success! Do you get that?
Well, what I am trying to tell you is that when you studied and faced the world, the times were different and even the challenges were different. Our challenges were far off schools, no good teachers, financial crunch in the families and no one to guide us as to what should we do after class 12 or which career is more suitable, engineering or medicine? We did not know which book to study from or which college to go to? We did what our friend did. We did what our parents told us to do.
The challenges today are very different.
They language, guidance, finance or distance are no more a worry as we have Google to search everything for us, we are earning well to take expensive consultations and send our children to any good school, even if it means stretching way beyond our budgets. The fee is no longer in hundreds! Our kids will have to face challenge when it comes to how well they can convince others who are all equally qualified and potential candidates in anything they try in future. Think hard. When everyone is scoring above 90 in their academics, what will be the differentiating factor? In the west, they learnt it way back and it’s time we master our communication skills. We need to ensure our children do not end up in the same situation like us, spending hours trying to learn a language or even trying to translate. That precious time should be spent better on acquiring more skills that will improve their chances technically. Tomorrow’s world will be a world of specialization. The more in depth knowledge your child has about any one subject, the better it will be for him/ her to survive. Provided, your child can communicate it verbally in writing to others! And I am very sure you will want to provide your child with all the edges today, so that they are independent and can fend for themselves tomorrow.
Phew! To cut the story short, do you want your child to face the same challenges as you did or do you think your child will never face those challenges as the times have changed!
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