slain not fed



The recent spat between a young athlete's coach and his mother has led to a child's future being held to ransom. It is true that in Budhia's case a solution will be found as he he is a media celebrity but the whole issue opens up a disturbing debate.

In an answer to a recent mail a friend wrote: The thought scares me that by providing support, we may also be creating a social monster which gets used to being fed. He was referring to my concern about the future of the children that transit project why or as a mater of fact the future of all children who acquire a mediocre education as that is what the present system has on offer. In its mission statement the lead India campaign states: our municipal schools are not equipped to impart even basic education but stops short of suggesting an alternative.

Seven years ago, when pwhy began, one lived under the illusion that education would open new avenues for children and hence give them a better future. Today if one were to be honest, experience has proved that it is not quite so. No matter how brilliant a slum kid is, he will never the the 90+% required to go to a good college, nor will he acquire the confidence, communication skills and the oomph required in today's working world. His marks may help him break some barriers but what about those who just scrape through.

The social monster referred to above is just that child, the one who holds a degree or certificate in hand and thus as arrogated itself the right to dream big. The question one is compelled to ask one's self is whether it is right to impart such education and feel satisfied? Is not one morally bound to think ahead and look for viable options?

The education for all campaign seems to have gone awry. There are schools without children, children with years of schooling and no knowledge. Budgets allocations increase each year but the situation on the ground worsens. Much needs to be done. Imparting a useless education is worse than no education at all.

Maybe there is a monster lurking, one that needs to be slain not fed