creating demand for education
creating demand for education
the education in india can be cited as an example. there is no demand. it is mostly supply driven. more schools, better buildings, incentives like mid-day meals, uniforms, books, even cycles for transport but without demand they fall flat. the enrolment touches cent percent (and sometimes even goes beyond it) but the number does not reflect the quality. it is just a completion of formality for a large number.
the question that arises is how to turn education into a wanted product. education means imparting of knowledge, and that knowledge must be useful in life. here it is to be clarified that mere means to earn is not the only useful thing, which is wrongly considered to be so. even the reading of religious text is also a desirable thing in life. it is not a waste. reading for entertainment also falls in desirable activity.
the point is how to develop interest in reading. the answer – libraries. they should stock all types of books - serious, non serious, and frivolous; religious and secular; classics and modern - in local language(s) – major or minor; standard or dialect. the libraries can be attached to schools or can be in mobile vans. a nominal fee will be charged (must not be free). this will be accompanied by a free period for library reading. these should be open to all – students, parents, and others.
but there is snag. libraries serve the literate. does it produce literates? no. the experts claim that knowledge can come through spoken words and broadcast words. so, if there are enough gains through the media, why bother about libraries. the advantage of written word is that it can be referenced when it is needed. however, it is important to note that the credibility of information in digital media can vary, and users need to be discerning when evaluating sources. the books, on the other hand, books, especially those from reputable publishers and authors, tend to be reliable sources of information. They undergo rigorous editorial processes and fact-checking, which enhances their credibility. Critical Thinking: Reading books encourages critical thinking and the development of analytical skills. Books often present complex ideas and require readers to engage actively with the material. books stimulate the imagination and encourage creativity, allowing readers to envision the narrative or subject matter in their own unique way. the media is not tuned to such an interpretation. in the long run, as the means of continuing education, books score. therein lies the importance of libraries.
granted that books are valuable, the question that arises is how will it make education attractive? how will it create demand for education? there is no easy answer. but if we compare social life of the previous century with the present one, one would notice the breakup of large families and creation of nuclear families, just the two of them with two offspring. as the elders go out, the youngsters are left with the option of media and the reading material, apart from the school. if the approach to libraries is easy, the tendency to go there will be much more since it not only provides knowledge but also companionship. once this love of reading develops, it can only grow. and if it grows in some, it is bound to have rippling effect on others which will mean craving for literacy, the door to knowledge.
certain things are implied in this approach. if the schools are far off and there are buses running to schedule to take the students to schools and bring them back, the presence of libraries will not make much difference. the alternative will be to encourage neighbourhood schools or the neighbourhood libraries. perhaps this difficulty can be overcome by providing for library periods as part of schedule in the schools but it would mean longer hours in the schools which may not be liked by school authorities or the transporters. furthermore, compulsory attendance has its own reactions and the intended purpose may not be served. Top of FormBottom of Form