Schools should be educating children, not merely re-directing them to after-school coaching.
But coaching centres are currently a Tk50,000cr business, accounting for 29% of all education costs -- what does that say about the quality of education in our classrooms?
Educationists and parents have long been concerned that our schools are not doing an adequate job in providing a high quality education or even preparing children for their exams, forcing parents to spend large amounts of money on coaching centres.
It is of no use blaming the existence of coaching centres -- they are the symptom, not the disease itself.
Our basic curriculum provides our students with none of the skills and knowledge required to succeed in the real world, and textbooks often contain biased or incorrect information.
Not only that, evaluations are farcical, and when we add the fact that rampant corruption within the system has led to continuous question paper leaks, the entire process seems compromised.
Primary and secondary schooling is crucial to any country’s success, and it is a tragedy that the authorities are not taking this more seriously, as highlighted by comments made by the Education Ministry last year, with one officer being arrested this year for corruption.
Without a competent schooling system with equally competent teachers tapping into the potential of our youth and producing skilled leaders and workers for our nation, our entire country’s vision for future success falls flat on its face.
Our schooling system is in crisis, and it is high time we treated it as a priority.
An overhaul of the system may be necessary, and to that end, rooting out corruption, and replacing incompetent, unqualified teachers is a necessary first step.