Disintegrating Marks

Exam and admission season is going all over the country. It is shocking every admission seeker has scored in the eighties and nineties. There was a time when scoring 65% meaning, a big achievement for a student and he was treated as brilliant, and if he touched the seventies, then he was compared with Swami Vivekananda! But today students are getting 100% or near to in Higher Secondary cannot sure of getting admission to a department of choice in Delhi’s top colleges or in top professional college.


This is the gift of so-called great reforms initiated by so-called great economist Dr.Man Mohan Singh, and learner-friendly modern, liberal and secular education system. In economics, there is the GDP deflator, to assess the level of price, development and inflation on the pricing of goods and services. But there is no deflator to assess the grade and inflation of marks in high school, intermediate and at a higher level.


Scoring 100% in English, once considered impossible, is a very common scene. Now a very simple question comes to mind, whether our kids are getting more intelligent and brilliant, or whether awarding high marks is a clever ploy of hiding poor education system.


It cannot be claimed that Indian students are intellectually and academically getting higher because our school grades are getting higher and higher every year. However, knowledge, discipline, manners etc., signal that the students are going down and down.  While at one end, college cut-offs keep touching the sky, but our international ranking in science, technology and innovation keeps going down. In other words, scoring high marks definitely does not mean learning well, at least in India. Even in the top 200 hundred universities, no Indian university is found.


During the last decade, our students are getting higher and higher grades on certificates and degrees but all these brilliant performances on mark sheet and degrees do not reflect our knowledge levels. See to 2014 Global Innovation Index, 81% of patent applications are from China, the US, Japan, South Korea and the EU. America leads in computer systems, South Korea has emerged as the new entry in the knowledge and research map but India is nowhere to be seen. Europe and America are the leaders and China, Japan and Korea are close to them but we are nowhere in the scene.


But where is the Indian education system heading? In terms of patent applications, we stand nowhere, just a pigmy and cannot stand to match up to any of the world leaders in the field of education, science and technology. Curiously enough, Indians have, patents submitted, abroad are in a large number than those that invented in our universities. Once again, Indian education here has contributed nothing.


In India education is also a part of vote bank politics. The graduate degree of any Islamic madarsa is at par with a degree of IIT, IIM or DU.  Due to this Indian students fare very poor when it comes to reading, writing, science, mathematics and technology even behind third world countries like Jordan, Armenia, Thailand and Singapore.


It would be unpatriotic if it is said that our coveted IITs, IIMs, University of Delhi, etc., do not appear among top 300 institutions of the world. Our head goes down in shame when we see that from very small nations institutions make the grade in the list.  It is not only American or western universities are always on top, but even Peking University is at 48th position, unknown Tsinghua University at 49th and even ordinary  Fudan University, at rank number 194th, is much above than our the best. Even Singapore University, Bangkok University is above Indian universities.


Here through education, campuses and students, vote bank politics is chased. Now educational policies are not about excellence or quality education, but about vote bank politics.


Now politicians initiate education policies and not the academicians. Now Right to Education (RTE), No Detention System, Mid Day Meal, Sarva Siksha Abhiyan, Madarsa Education, Caste and Communal Quotas, political appointees, etc., are responsible for this fate.


There was a time when first-class meant badge of excellence, but today 60% means nothing. Now grade inflation, and high award or marks are ordered by the policymakers. Question papers have become more and more objective where right answers can be procured easily. But when it comes to writing a sentence or a paragraph, students fail to write correctly.


If examinations and evaluation are done honestly and no cheating is allowed, the pass percentage in the best of Indian universities cannot cross 20%. Such scenes can be seen in the best on Indian institutions like IITs, DU, FTII, etc… Then political fathers jump in the campuses and all the failed are passed.


Long back, the then BJP government in Utter Pradesh, headed by Shri Kalyan Singh, brought very tough, Anti Copying Act and all the cheating was stopped. But the results could not cross 10% at 10th and 12th standards and all the campuses were emptied of students.


Quality education is not the priority of ay body. This suits everybody; political masters, authorities and students. All are happy. The more generous the system of marking, grading, examination and admission, the more modern, liberal, free, pro-learner, stress-free and scientific system it will be and less pressure there is on students to perform.  Schools, universities and institutions, all are attacked by this malaise.


Now, one can see politicians, bureaucrats, judges, NGO operators, Civil society and right activists etc., etc., occupying big positions in academic bodies. During the UPA regime, all the academic institutions were plagued by such elements. This is one very important reason why good teachers and professors are driven out of the system by bad elements.


Now, it is almost a rare scene in some department and institutions to see a below B plus or below 55%. This discourages the urge to work hard when one is getting a good grade without hard work. However good achievers in Indian Universities perform very poorly on the world stage. Grades and marks are going high but educational standard and knowledge level are going down.


That day is not very far when we will see a new mathematical system of getting 110% and 120% in place of 100%.

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