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Why Indian education system is failing your kids

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By Harshmeet Singh

To most Indian parents, the only criterion to mark their child’s intelligence is the grades at school. With the child’s grades becoming as much ‘status symbol’ in the society as a luxury car, parents’ concern about their kid’s academic record is driven by concern and worry equally.

An entire generation of kids is cramping up facts and data without understanding the significance behind any of it. Since rote writing gives them the glory of achieving good grades, they can’t be blamed for not trying anything else. What’s more – the ones who try to go beyond rote learning are discouraged with low grades and never-ending follow up questions.

Every child is different

In our society, teaching is a thankless job. Unless you are teaching at a coaching centre for competitive examinations, your teaching profession is considered as your failure to get a good job. The simple fact that teachers are entrusted with the responsibility of shaping the lives of hundreds of students who would go on to shape the country’s future speaks volumes for the role they play in the society.

Yet, most teachers tend to overlook a simple fact – every child is different. The learning capacity and methods of each individual evolve in a different manner. While some people are audio learners, others may be visual learners. There are also a number of people who prefer a kinaesthetic method of learning. It is the teacher’s responsibility to understand the most suitable method for kids’ learning and feed them in that manner. Forcing the rote learning methods on to the kids can kill the potential of their minds.

Indian Education system

Barring some occasional end ranks in the top 100 institutes of the world, Indian educational institutes don’t give much reason to cheer. An acute shortage of teachers at the primary level and a dipping reading level of the kids are the standout features of our education system. Rote learning methods dominate our classrooms, with students learning or rather remembering to pass examinations and score marks, not to gain knowledge. The top rankers are the ones who can learn the most, not the ones who understood the most. An increasing school enrollment ratio has failed to increase the quality of education given in schools.

Bad teachers & absence of teachers

While much attention is given to the high number of vacancies in schools, there are minimal efforts to ensure that the appointed teachers provide the quality of learning that is expected from them. Most of the teachers are poorly trained. Considering that they got their jobs by passing an exam on the basis of rote learning, they can’t be expected to inculcate different values in their students. Absence of teacher training programs has ensured that the teachers reach stagnation within a couple of years of joining.

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EU Expresses Concern Over Facebook Losing Data

Under GDPR, companies can be fined up to four percent of annual global turnover if they fail to abide by the rules.

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This photo shows the logo for Facebook on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite, in New York's Times Square. VOA

The EU’s top data privacy enforcer expressed worry Tuesday that Facebook had lost control of data security after a vast privacy breach that she said affected five million Europeans.

“It is a question for the management, if they have things under control,” EU Justice and Consumer Affairs Commissioner Vera Jourova told AFP in Luxembourg.

“The magnitude of the company … makes it very difficult to manage, but they have to do that because they are harvesting the data and they are making incredible money on using our privacy as the commodity,” she added.

Facebook
This Feb. 19, 2014, photo shows a Facebook app icon on a smartphone in New York. VOA

Jourova spoke just days after Facebook admitted that up to 50 million user accounts around the world had been breached by hackers, in yet another scandal for the beleaguered social platform.

“I will know more … in hours or days but according to our knowledge, five million Europeans have been affected out of those 50, which is an incredible number,” she said.

Jourova said Facebook’s quick revelation of the case demonstrated that new European rules on data protection implemented earlier this year are working.

New EU rules – the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) – have been billed as the biggest shake-up of privacy regulations since the birth of the web and give European regulators vast new enforcement powers.

Facebook
Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg testifies before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on foreign influence operations and their use of social media on Capitol Hill. VOA

The case for GDPR was boosted by another recent scandal over the harvesting of Facebook users’ data by Cambridge Analytica, a US-British political research firm, for the 2016 US presidential election.

Jourova said the worst cases involve a company finding a major breach then failing to warn authorities or their users, which she said doesn’t appear to be the case in the latest Facebook drama.

Also Read: The European Union Warns Facebook Over Consumer’s Data Usage

Under GDPR, companies can be fined up to four percent of annual global turnover if they fail to abide by the rules, including notification of the data breach within 72 hours.

Facebook met this requirement, Jourova pointed out, which “is one of the factors which might result in lower sanctions, but this is only theoretical”. (VOA)

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