How would you differentiate the existing education system with the one under the BNP government? What does the current system lack?
The main difference is corruption in the system. It has been increasing at an alarming rate in recent times. Question leaks have become an epidemic.
Adopting of unfair means in examinations at the individual level previously existed ,but now the situation has worsened. Our government took care of it thanks to [former] state minister for education Ehsanul Hoque Milan’s timely measures.
But after the BNP’s tenure, cheating in exams started again. Introduction of MCQ system, focus on CGPA, increasing number of coaching centres, and widespread use of digital means have driven the students away from their studies and increased chances of cheating during exams.
The Awami League has been in power for a long time but the government seems to be hiding the real scenario and giving an untimely statement without taking proper actions. These are also encouraging crimes such as cheating on exams. The government finally took measures to tackle the menace after admitting the incidents of question paper leaks in the face of mounting criticism as the problem reached a new high.
I do not know how much longer the government will keep up these measures or how effective they will be. But these steps should have been taken much earlier. In fact, the government never took any measures for the development of the country’s education system.
What measures are needed to tackle the problem and what would the BNP have done to tackle the situation?
It is sad but true that question leaks involve ministry officials, government employees, and teachers of coaching centres and schools. But the most saddening thing is that the innocent students are also getting involved in this procedure. It is breaking our [nation’s] backbone.
It would have been better if the government recognized the problem at least five years earlier and took the measures it is implementing now.
If I were in power, I would have first addressed the issues raised by the teachers, introduced orientation programs, started capacity building training for them, and shut down all sorts of coaching centres. I would have also evaluated the merit of the teachers and formed a monitoring cell in every school to ensure no teacher was involved with any coaching centre.
As the teachers did not teach well in the classes, the students were forced to go to coaching centres. This causes a huge wastage of their time and many of them are not able to prepare well. That is why so many students are adopting unfair means.
It is the teachers’ duty to build up the morale of their students and that is why they need to be trained first and then the students would learn accurately.
If teachers run after money, then so will students. Crimes like question leaks nowadays involve money and students can easily be lured to be part of the crime. We cannot ignore this issue since students are supposed to receive moral guidance from schools and not the opposite.
The oppression of women and children has increased. Is the lack of moral guidance behind the situation?
It is the duty of the teachers to teach their students about morals and mutual respect. Another big mistake is that our current curriculums do not address moral lessons properly. Issues like the oppression of women and children and human relationships need to be included in lesson plans as well.
Can politics and education be separated from each other? There is a possibility that if the country faces any unstable situation then it could affect the education system.
The education system should never be affected by the political situation of the country but our society is yet to develop a firewall between the two. And again, education and politics could never be separated from each other. The quality of the country’s politics will degrade if the leaders are not educated.
Then what about student politics?
Student politics means building a force for a political party which will run the party as well as the country in the future. This force is not meant to be used in crimes or violence against women or for creating any untoward situation to build pressure on certain people or community.
It is true that this force is difficult to control. If the leaders acted properly, the senior leaders whom the forces are following, then they would never choose the wrong path.