Thursday, December 25, 2014

Most effective strategy or policy to improve India's education system?

A paragraph-entry question asked in a hopelessly close-ended education-related survey, and my response

In your view, what is the most effective strategy or policy to improve India's education system?

Learning needs to get non-linear. We need to stop standardizing education, and to stop grading, percentaging the youth; to recognize that there is no such thing as a failure and that everyone has something valuable to contribute to society. A basic test for competency along the lines of drivers license can suffice where over a basic minimum criteria there is no need to track who scored what; there is no need for turning that into a competition or race (if we don't do that to drivers licenses then we don't need to be doing it anywhere else). Leave the job of selecting the best candidate for a job to the employers.. there is no need for governmental assistance in that by way of holding monopolies on issuing certificates of higher education. Right now most employers are learning the hard way that all that long chain of certifications is proving pointless; they have to exercise their own judgements in finding talent anyway; they can only learn someone's true value by trying them out first. So a try-first entry mechanism is needed. Instead of spending so much resources on making the entire human population of the country jump though old, obsolete hoops which are designed to make things pyramidal and allow only a tiny minority to ever prosper, let's build systems that give everyone the opportunity to find what their unique gifts are and how they can contribute best.

What would your response be?

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