CHENNAI: Eliminating state control over educational institutions could boost skill level of students, said panelists at the ThinkEdu conclave here on Friday. Speaking on the occasion, Science and Technology Minister and panelist Dr Harsh Vardhan called for cooperation between scientists and politicians to expand IITs and IIMs. “We have to evolve a process of continuous brainstorming and thorough introspection and come up with solutions to these issues - so that we produce the best professionals, students and people with good values and human beings,” he said.
Lamenting on the decline in learning, skills aside, Inventure Academy’s Nooraine Fazal revealed that India’s primary and secondary school education numbers were dipping. “Studies like ASER 2012 showed that learning levels have been falling over the past decade. Shockingly, India finished second last in 2009 and the government refused to participate in the PISA test in 2012 and 2015. India’s education system needs to be based on smart policies. A one-size-fits-all approach just won’t work,” she said.
Express Editorial Director Prabhu Chawla steered the debate toward the kind of students who were being produced. “The question is whether we’re producing good skilled students who are employable or good human beings who will be good citizens,” was a paradox he posed to the panel.
The will and views of Dr Harsh Vardhan were up to the task. “Value-driven education, not mere rote learning or research was the key. Education is not about giving routine courses, passing exams, degrees - but making well-meaning human beings as well,” he said.