This side of the Gate!
I was always fascinated by lawyers. My Maternal grandfather was quite a popular lawyer in his town. I was very much enamored whenever I saw him super-studded office with full of books on laws and books on case laws which was a part of the house and was called “Baithak”. It looked to me more like a Library with all books so beautifully and elegantly arranged. The people always standing outside his office made me think that he was very popular. Actually he was very hard working strong man. After retiring from the post of Post-master he studied Law after it and became a successful Lawyer. He practiced non-defeated till he reached late 90s when he left this world.
I too wanted to become a lawyer like him but never did as parents were against it stating who will marry a Lawyer. This argument still does not go with me. After doing my master in computer, working for a decade, marrying a decent guy, have two beautiful kids, I realized that the quest to become a lawyer was still alive within me. I asked my husband he instantly agreed and I got admitted in three years degree course. I realized this for the first time that learning law, those fat books, interesting case laws is much easier than giving law exams. Giving back to back exams without even a single break makes it feel more like speed test then knowledge test. The 3 hours limit and 6 big answers to write, near about 30-35 pages at an average. The knowledge which was absorbed by brain like sponge absorbing water when learned professors taught in the college disappears somewhere while racing against the time completing those exam papers. It was almost a routine for a week getting up at 4.30 a.m and sleeping at 12.00 midnight. It was almost difficult for a person like me to survive on such a small diet of sleep. Exams for children added more atrocities. One kid appearing for 10th board and other one who has still not learnt to study without me made exams look to me like a quest to conquer Mount Everest in a Day!
This made me introspect that when I am so much troubled with this exams system then what about small children or young souls who are constantly under the exams pressures. We often provide them with a single gate of evaluation and who so ever pass through it that particular day is the winner for rest of the life and others are termed losers. For example on the last paper of my exams, my back was aching badly because of tiredness and inadequate sleep and that pain was passing a current like sensation to my brains, my hands revolted they were in no mood that day to write, even though I knew everything but my health state that day made me restless and compelled me write the paper early and leave the examination hall early then to sit and vomit in the examination hall.
So the question is what is important learning and its applicability or performance on a particular day? If remove the examination system then will it not let the so called non deserving students to qualify then so called deserving students. Then what is the solution to it? My suggestion would stop examining the students, they are not sick to be examined, they become sick because of the examinations. They need to be evaluated for their skills, talents and learning. They should be evaluated on their ability to apply their knowledge in real life situations. As currently I being a law student, I can give an example of it, give a real life legal problem, ask the student which laws and sections are applicable in the given scenario, what argument will they present if they needed to defend or prosecute the accused. Let them carry all study books which they want to carry. I think not even the best lawyers of the world are expected to by heart all laws and sections and are prohibited to refer the books. Then why students are expected to do so?
In school and college level studies same concept of evaluation can be applied, let them carry their books and solve all application based problems. All should understand learning cannot be judged on one day performance. This open book system will not even give learners are breather but also take India out of the evil of cheating prevailing in our society like a menace.
My ardent request to all parents, do not judge your children on the performance on one D-day, that cannot be measure of your kids ability. Some manage to enter that gate which we compel them to go across and those remaining this side of the gate are termed as losers. Nobody better then parents know the capacity and capability of child, so stopping examining them from others eyes. Respect and love them for what they are and do not make it conditional irrespective they are that side or this side of the gate.