TODAY -

The freebies put up for all to see : The absurdity of it all
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: July 25, 2022 -



The obsession with marks and more marks is getting ludicrous.

If schools which specialise in the Plus 2 level have put up all sorts of imaginable freebies to attract the best of the best in the Class X examinations, then one has schools trumpeting contentious claims that their so and so student has topped the Class XII exams in Manipur conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education.

Manipur has also seen a sort of a debate between two schools in the recent past over the question of which student topped the CBSE Class XII exams here in Manipur.

Guidelines laid down by the CBSE says that to work out the percentage of the Class XII exams, the marks of five subjects should be taken into calculation, though the student could have appeared in six subjects.

It was over this very point that some sort of a stand off was witnessed between two private schools here in Manipur on who had scored the highest in the CBSE Class XII exams.

This happened some years back, and despite the ugliness of it all, this has not stopped some schools from going overboard with their claims, which may sound ludicrous and are far removed from the understanding of healthy competition or even an 'educated' debate.

All noise with no substance. In the process what has been put at stake are the students.

The marks scored by the students are precious to them and in the absence of other parameters to judge the performance or competency of a student, it will be marks.

But care should be taken to ensure that the marks scored by the students are not reduced to goods being sold in the flea market, with 'heavy bargaining and even arguments (one cannot call them debates)' all with an eye to push the standing of the institute a notch or two higher in the eyes of the parents, guardians, elders of family and even amongst the students.

This is where everyone needs to be very clear on certain things.

It is not the performance of the topper or the students who score handsomely in the exams that should determine the competitiveness or quality of a school, but how it manages to mould the young students to become responsible sons and daughters of the land and the family.

The dust kicked up by the mad rush for marks and more marks seems to have however blinded everyone to this bare and essential fact.

Now with the Council of Higher Secondary Education, Manipur and CBSE having announced the Class XII results one can expect thousands of students from Manipur making a beeline for institutions outside the State of Manipur.

This is a point which The Sangai Express has touched upon many times in this column and with no sign that worthwhile questions have been raised on why this is so, this point will be raised again and again.

Not all will get into medical and engineering. Not all will be keen to pursue these two courses. Plus there are students from the Humanities and Commerce stream.

And for parents who can afford the extra expenditure and who are willing to bend backwards to provide something better for their children, further studies obviously means stepping outside Manipur.

Per se there is nothing wrong in this but when it becomes some sort of a compulsion to send the young students outside for their further studies then it is time for everyone to sit back and seriously mull over this question.

The Government, the different civil society organisations and the numerous student organisations all need to seriously study this question.

Why is there such a strong push factor ?

Or is it a case of the pull factor of colleges and universities outside Manipur being too overwhelming for higher studies that it has become some sort of a compulsion ?

For well to do parents this question may not arise but not all parents belong to the moneyed category and this is where it becomes important for everyone to ask whether the right atmosphere has been created for students to pursue their higher studies here or not.



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