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India Education
I am not sure why he presses only IIT alumni to do great work. If India seriously implements NSS, it can change India. But this programme is completely ignored, under paid and full of corruption by University. I joined during my college days, never seen them doing anything during my whole university life. I can bet college used to get donation from Govt, and college kept one empty room for NSS.
Lack of awareness is a major problem.
<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Jan 26 2008, 11:50 PM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Jan 26 2008, 11:50 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->I am not sure why he presses only IIT alumni to do great work. If India seriously implements NSS, it can change India. But this programme is completely ignored, under paid and full of corruption by University. I joined during my college days, never seen them doing anything during my whole university life. I can bet college used to get donation from Govt, and college kept one empty room for NSS.
Lack of awareness is a major problem.
<b>Well if the youth are ready to make an difference then they can do so with a little help from their educational institutions.</b>

[center]<b>Suttur to be litigation-free within a month</b>[/center]
From S Prashantha, DH News Service,
Jan 24, 2008

<b>Mysore: In a landmark initiative, the JSS Law College, along with the Legal Services Authority, has taken up a project to facilitate outside the court settlement of all cases in Suttur of Nanjangud taluk and declare it a litigation-free village.</b>

<b>The three-month long project also aims at ensuring that all the property transfers and marriage registrations are done in Suttur, apart from getting driving licences issued to eligible people in the village.</b>

The exercise involves judges, advocates, officials of various departments, local elected representatives, law students, members of Stree Shakthi Sanghas, self-help groups (SHGs) and youth associations. The Nanjangud Bar Association has also extended its support. It has been planned to cover other villages around Mysore under the project in a phased manner.

<b>JSS Law College Principal K S Suresh, who heads the project, told Deccan Herald that to begin with, 150 students will conduct a survey to identify the actual number of cases, both criminal and civil, in the village.

The process is expected to be completed in a month, he said.</b>

The students will simultaneously sensitise the Panchayat Raj elected representatives and members of Sthree Shakthi Sanghas, SHGs and youth associations on creating awareness among villagers and encouraging them to opt for settling cases through negotiation.

Every Saturday and Sunday, judges and advocates will visit the village. The parties will be summoned to appear before them. Judges will convince them to settle the cases at the place by explaining the benefits of the same. The judges will highlight the point that they will get the same judgement even after making trips to the court at the cost of time and money.

Thus the parties will be counselled to withdraw the cases, following settlements. Once all the cases are withdrawn, the village will be declared free from litigation, Prof Suresh said.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Banking on memory </b>(TOI)
3 Feb 2008, Chidanand Rajghatta

It probably holds good for the whole world, but it's demonstrably true that in India there isn't a parent who does not think his or her child is the cutest, smartest prodigy anywhere. In the timeless and torturous Indian ritual, children are introduced to memory feats in this manner: " Beta, uncle aur aunty ko twinkle twinkle little star sunaa do ," the parents will flute. If you are lucky to be a parent yourself, you will smile indulgently at the infant's schtick; if not, you will grin and bear it.

Indian education typically involves teaching by repetition. Learning by heart, cramming, mugging are some of the terms we use for memorisation. To this day I can recite reams of Shakespeare, sundry shlokas and mantras, several laws of physics, and multiplication tables deep into double digits, some of them inspired by caning from the teachers Varghese and Joseph. Little of it has come to any use. Last month, I surpassed my grasp of trivia by recalling the playing 11 in the first Test of the 1969 Australian team that toured India, my first exposure to international cricket.

Such demonic passion for mnemonics was recently displayed on YouTube by a proud Indian father who got his three-year-old son to recite the capitals of all 50 American states. Doubtless, he will not go on to be Einstein, about whom one of his teachers said "would never be able to do anything that would make any sense in this life," and another essayed that his "available grade reports present a picture of, at worst, a moderately successful student."

In contrast, American kids are less into learning by rote or trivia, although one does come across the oddball who can reel off the 1969 Mets V Orioles World Series scores. My friend Adam cares diddly squat about Boyle's Law or the Bible, but he gutted his entire bathroom down to pot and plumbing, tub and tiling, and rebuilt it himself for less than $5,000 (half of what a contractor would have charged). Meantime, I blew a gasket paying $80 to get my lawnmower fixed ($56 labour, $24 parts), thanks to an education system that didn't allow me to get my hands dirty.

But, it turns out that there is something to be said for our desi system of bending our brains rather than our backs, beyond paraphrasing a successful Indian who insisted he wouldn't bother about paying $56 an hour if he could bill $500 an hour.

Recent reports say there is now a growing craze in Japan for Indian style education. The few Indian schools in Japan are reporting a surge of application from locals. Bookstores are filled with titles like Extreme Indian Arithmetic Drills and The Unknown Secrets of the Indians . And newspaper reports speak with awe about how Indian children memorise multiplication tables far beyond nine times nine, the standard for young elementary students in Japan.

In the US, a documentary called Two Million Minutes (the estimated time that students spend in high school) which compares American students unfavourably with their Indian and Chinese counterparts, has become part of the national discourse on education. Some commentators are talking up India as an education superpower. And Tom Friedman goes around the country warning young Americans that hungry Indian kids burning the midnight oil are out to take their jobs.

So, there is something we are doing right, even if it isn't teaching our kids to fix things. It's a thought though that had we tweaked our system to teach our generation to tweak things around, we might also have been a great manufacturing power by now.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Japan wants Indians to teach them mathematics</b>

Mon, Feb 4 09:12 AM

Mumbai, Feb 4 - Japan may soon open its gates to Indian primary schoolteachers specialising in mathematics. For, the Japanese believe that Indians are the best in the world when it comes to teaching this subject.

The deputy leader of the visiting Indo-Japan Business Co-operation delegation, Ryuji Inamura, says the Japanese are extremely interested in the way this crucial academic subject is taught in India.

'Even though the idea is still in an incipient stage, we in Japan have already started poring over the Indian elementary mathematic syllabi and plan to take concrete steps ahead in the matter,' Inamura told IANS here.

Inamura said: 'India has brought out IITians who are respected technocrats and sought after all over the world. Their foundation of mathematics is laid in the way they were taught during elementary schooling.'

When asked how the Japanese planned to tackle the language barrier, Yoshihiro Nishida, chairman of Yokohama Foreign Trade Association and co-chairman Yokohama India Center Council, explained: 'Mathematics is primarily a subject having its own unique numerical language. Just the basic knowledge of Japanese is enough for teaching purposes at the primary level.'

Nishida revealed that they were seriously planning to introduce the Japanese language in India in a big way. 'It will not only help iron out the psychological barrier, but also the language barrier if trade between the two countries has to flourish.'

Concurring with Nishida, Inamura pointed out that the interest in the subject could be gauged from the fact that two copyright cases of Indian school mathematics textbooks were currently pending in Japanese courts.

'I do not have more details on the issue, but then it shows the kind of influence the Indian educational system has in our country.'

When asked the reason behind the spurt of interest in this subject, Makino Masatomo, a special writer for one of Japan's top ranking newspapers Kanagawa Shimbun, explained at length.

'Since the 1980s and 90s, there has been a sharp dip in mathematics education in Japanese schools. After making a deep assessment of educational systems all over the world, particularly the developed countries, a majority of our educators have concluded that the teaching system in the Indian subcontinent can do wonders for Japan.

'After all, India has right now the best IT professionals. And take a look at academic institutions the world over, you find Indians occupying high-level teaching chairs. '

Apart from the keen interest in Indian primary education system, the delegation has come to India with a focus on reviving economic ties.

Nalin C. Advani, director and chairman, Working Group, Yokohama India Center Council, told IANS: 'In recent years, the Japanese have made India synonymous with a one-liner - 'Oh, your country had discovered the concept of zero isn't it?' That is very true and a good sign of the high level academic excellence of our own teachers, despite severe handicaps.'

Referring to the business tie-ups, Advani said that Japanese businessmen are very keen that Indian businessmen explore sunrise Japanese industrial sectors like bio-pharma and IT.

'However, many others are keen to explore joint ventures in areas like city planning, real estate, rail network, port development and infrastructure development, specially in the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor. Primary discussions have been conducted, but the fact remains that the Japanese certainly are among the best town planners in the world.'

Another aspect of immense interest is boosting tourism between the two countries. Apart from specialised tours, Nishida said efforts are now on to promote Indian culture and put the country among the Most Favoured Tourist Destinations for the Japanese traveller.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--emo&:ind--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/india.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='india.gif' /><!--endemo--> Building knowledge blocks
Ramesh Vinayak
February 7, 2008

Against the backdrop of a smoke-billowing chimney of a brick kiln and under a tin-roofed shed stuffed with rows of freshly-molded bricks, a class is in session.

Nearly 50 children sit cross-legged attentively practising numerals on their slates. It is an unusual setting but nine-year-old Ashida isn’t complaining as this is the only school she knows of.

In fact, this daughter of an Assamese migrant beams with pride as she displays her neatly-written Hindi alphabets which she picked up in a month. Until last year, she would have spent the first half of the year working in brickkilns and the rest assisting her family in chores back home. “I learn something new in school everyday,” she says coyly.

She speaks for about five thousand students who attend 100-odd brick kiln schools across Jhajjar district, Haryana. Known as bhatta-shalas, these schools are a boon for the wards of kiln workers, who miss primary education due to their families’ constant inter-state migration.

In 2006, 28-year-old additional deputy commissioner Anil B. Joshi took the initiative of setting up 25 schools, covering 50-odd brickkilns.

Joshi with his studentsHe began India’s first kiln school by bringing labourer’s children into the loop of the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan—a government project for providing children, between the ages of six and 14, with primary education.

As Jhajjar’s soil is ideal for brick-making, it has about 410 brickkilns. From December to July, more than 20,000 workers make their way to the district and work in these kilns. While, their children—10,000 in Jhajjar alone—never make it to school and work for a pittance.

Pune-based NGO Dnyanprabodhini has trained 25 local youth to teach in bhatta-shalas. Each of these schools has a class for students of first to fourth standards, along with a flexible curriculum focusing on basic mathematics, science, languages and hygiene.

Also following the mid-day meal scheme, these schools have reported higher attendance than their regular counterparts. In May 2007, 70 per cent students did well in the final evaluation and received certificates allowing them admission in regular schools. An ILO-funded tracking system for the bhatta-shala project saw the enrollment of 800 students in their native districts in seven states.

The state Government has now prescribed bhatta-shalas as a model for other districts after such a success. As an evolving experiment it is a learning experience for the authorities as well and is laying the foundation for education, brick by brick.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Japan's new education model: India</b>
By Martin Fackler

MITAKA, Japan: <b>Despite an improved economy, Japan is suffering a crisis of confidence these days about its ability to compete with its emerging Asian rivals, China and India. </b>One result has been a growing craze for Indian education in this fad-obsessed nation.

The Indian boomlet reflects the insecurity many Japanese feel about schools in their country, facilities that once turned out students who consistently ranked at the top of international tests. <b>But now many are looking for lessons from India, a country seen by many in Japan as the world's ascendant education superpower.</b>

Bookstores are filled with titles like "Extreme Indian Arithmetic Drills" and "The Unknown Secrets of the Indians." Newspapers carry reports of Indian children memorizing multiplication tables far beyond nine times nine, the standard for young elementary students in Japan. And the few Indian international schools in Japan are reporting a surge in applications from Japanese families.

At the Little Angels English Academy & International Kindergarten, the textbooks are from India, most of the teachers are South Asian, and classroom posters depict animals out of Indian tales, including dancing elephants in plumed turbans. The kindergarten students even color maps of India in the green and saffron of its flag.

Little Angels is in Mikata, a Tokyo suburb. Only 1 of its 45 students is Indian. Most are Japanese.

The thought of viewing another Asian country as a model in education, or almost anything else, would have been unheard of a few years ago, education experts and historians say.

Much of Japan has long looked down on the rest of Asia, priding itself on being the most advanced country in the region. Indeed, Japan has dominated the continent for more than a century, first as an imperial power and more recently as the first Asian economy to achieve Western levels of development.

But in recent years, Japan has grown increasingly insecure, gripped by fear that it was being overshadowed by India and China, which were rapidly gaining in economic weight and sophistication. The government in Tokyo has tried to preserve the Japanese technological lead and strengthen its military. But the Japanese have been forced to shed a traditional indifference to their neighbors in the region.

Suddenly, Japan is, grudgingly, starting to show a new sense of respect.

"Until now, Japanese saw China and India as backward and poor," said Yoshinori Murai, a professor of Asian cultures at Sophia University in Tokyo. "As Japan loses confidence in itself, its attitudes toward Asia are changing. It has started seeing India and China as nations with something to offer."

In education, Japanese respect has grown in seemingly direct proportion to how far its performance has slipped below its Asian rivals on international tests. Last month, a cry of alarm greeted the announcement by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that in an international survey of math skills, Japan had fallen from first place in 2000 to 10th place, behind Taiwan, Hong Kong and South Korea.

From second in science in 2000, Japan dropped to sixth place.

While China has stirred more concern as a political and economic challenger, India has emerged as the country to beat in a more benign rivalry over education. In part, this reflects the image in Japan of China as a cheap manufacturer and technological imitator. But Indian success in software development, Internet businesses and knowledge-intensive industries where Japan has failed to make inroads has sparked more than a tinge of envy.

<b>Most annoying for many Japanese is that the aspects of Indian education they now praise are similar to those that once made Japan famous for its work ethic and discipline: </b>learning more at an earlier age, a heavier reliance on rote memorization and cramming, and a stronger focus on the basics, particularly in math and science.

More demanding Indian education standards are apparent at the Little Angels Kindergarten, and are the main source of its popularity. Its 2-year-old pupils are taught to count to 20, the 3-year-olds are introduced to computers, and the 5-year-olds learn to multiply, solve math word problems and write one-page essays in English - tasks that most Japanese schools do not teach until at least second grade.

Indeed, Japanese anxieties about declining competitiveness echo the angst of another country two decades ago, when Japan was the economic upstart.

"Japan's interest in learning from Indian education is a lot like America's interest in learning from Japanese education," said Kaoru Okamoto, a professor specializing in education policy at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo.

As with many new things in Japan, the interest in Indian-style education has become a social fad, with everyone suddenly piling on.

<b>Indian education is a frequent topic in public forums, from talk shows to conferences on education.</b> Popular books claim to reveal the Indian secrets for multiplying and dividing multiple-digit numbers.

<b>Even the notoriously conservative Japanese education ministry has begun discussing Indian teaching methods, Jun Takai, of the ministry's international affairs division, said.</b>

<b>Eager parents have begun trying to send their children to one of the roughly half dozen Indian schools in Japan, </b>in hopes of giving them a head start in the intensely competitive college entrance exams.

In Tokyo, the two largest Indian schools, which teach kindergarten through junior high, mainly to Indian expatriates, received a sudden increase in inquiries from Japanese parents starting last year.

The Global Indian International School says that 20 of its some 200 students are now Japanese, with demand so high from Indian and Japanese parents that it is building a second campus in the neighboring city of Yokohama.

The other, the India International School in Japan, just expanded to 170 students last year, including 10 Japanese. It plans to expand again.

"We feel a very, very high interest of Japanese parents," Nirmal Jain, principal of the India International School, said.

The boom has had the side effect of making many Japanese a little more tolerant toward other Asians.

The founder of the Little Angels school, Jeevarani Angelina, a former oil company executive from Chennai, India, who accompanied her husband to Japan in 1990, said she initially had difficulty persuading landlords to rent space to an Indian woman to start a school. But now, the fact that she and three of her four full-time teachers are non-Japanese Asians is a selling point for the school.

"When I started, it was a first to have an English-language school taught by Asians, not Caucasians," she said, referring to the long presence of American and European international schools.

Unlike other Indian schools, Angelina said Little Angels was intended primarily for Japanese children, to fill the shortcomings she had found when she sent her own sons to Japanese kindergarten.

"I was lucky because I started when the Indian-education boom started," said Angelina, 50, who goes by the name Rani Sanku because it is easier for Japanese to pronounce. (Sanku is her husband's family name.)

Angelina has adapted the curriculum to Japan by adding more group activities, decreasing rote memorization and omitting Indian history. Encouraged by the kindergarten's success, she said she plans to open an Indian-style elementary school this year.

Parents are enthusiastic about the school's more rigorous standards.

"My son's level is higher those than those of other Japanese children the same age," said Eiko Kikutake, whose son Hayato, 5, attends Little Angels. "Indian education is really amazing! This wouldn't have been possible at a Japanese kindergarten."<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Global B-Schools design courses for Indian managers
19 Feb, 2008

MUMBAI: K Ramkumar's inbox is flooded with unsolicited emails. The HR head of ICICI Bank claims that almost every other day, he receives a mail from a major global business school trying to hawk a course from its executive education programme.

Five years ago, this would have been unheard of. Today, deans and professors from the best business schools are jostling for an appointment with Mr Ramkumar and other senior executives to discuss how to train managers at India's second largest bank.

It did take a while for the somewhat insular global schools to figure out the India growth story, but now that they are here, the biggest and the best business schools are trying to make up for lost time. Harvard Business School (HBS) just completed its first five-day executive education programme in Hyderabad.

If a similar course was taught at the Harvard campus, it would have cost $10,000 upwards. An Indian executive gets it for as low as Rs 1,80,000. Foreign B-Schools and Indian companies are finding common ground because rapid growth has left many firms short of leaders, making it the right time for B-schools to enter the market.

Says Ernst & Young human capital services partner Tanmay Kapoor, “There is a shortage of 20-40% in the leadership positions across sectors.” Many companies have found internal training to be a substitute but after a point it becomes uneconomical.

Now that foreign B-Schools are willing to offer customised courses at competitive prices, the market has opened up. Wharton Executive Education senior director-executive programmes Sandhya Karpe says that the Indian executive education market now recognises the value of world-class executive education and is eager to invest in the same. Most of these B-Schools have already seen the power of large numbers at work in China. A similar phenomenon is taking place in India. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>3 IITs, 16 universities on the anvil</b>
From http://in.budget.yahoo. com


Education remained the focus of the Union budget for the third consecutive year with <b>increase in allocation of 20 per cent for the sector.</b>

The government also announced schemes to start pre-primary education in government schools, scholarships for higher education as well as science education. <b>The budget also includes funds for opening 6,000 schools, 16 central universities, three IITs and two schools of planning and architecture.</b>

A slew of scholarships have been announced to check dropout rates. There would be a new central scheme to extend scholarship to at least two per cent of students passing out of schools for pursuing higher education in colleges and universities.

Students from Classes IX till XII will also get scholarships from the next financial year for which Rs 750 crore has been earmarked.

Finance Minister P. Chidambaram also announced a programme under which a student interested in science can go for a government scholarship from 10 years till 32 years of age. Called Innovation in Science Pursuit for Inspired Research, or Inspire, the scheme will have separate scholarships for young learners in the age group of 10-17 years, scholarship for continuing science education from 17-22 years and opportunities for research careers from 22 to 32 years.

The HRD ministry got a 20 per cent increase in its budget to Rs 34,300 crore for the financial year with the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan getting Rs 13,100 crore and the mid-day meal scheme Rs 8,000 crore.

There is also allocation of Rs 2,011,221 crore for two new schemes - the Universal Access and Quality at the Secondary Stage and Incentive to Girls for Secondary Stage.

The budget for higher education has been increased by about 90 per cent from Rs 6,397 crore to Rs 10,852 crore with allocation for opening the 16 central universities, three new IITs in Bihar, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh and two Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research and two schools of planning and architecture.
<b>Bihar to set up FM radio stations in schools</b>
Mar 23, 2008

Patna : The Bihar government plans to set up Frequency Modulation (FM) radio stations in schools across the state to make education more effective and user-friendly.

Initially, the government would set up FM radio stations in 11 high schools in Patna and Nalanda. 'The government would select more schools for the purpose later,' the state's Minister of Information & Public Relations Arjun Rai said.

Rai said the decision to set up school FM radio stations was taken in view of the fact that the world was using information technology in schools for easy access to knowledge.

'Programmes on FM radio would be made to educate and inform students about community development, health and disaster management,' Rai said.

These FM radios would help revive local and folk music and art, and provide opportunities to local people to generate employment, particularly in the rural areas.

'The FM radio station would air four to five hours' programme daily, including entertainment,' an official in the information and public relations department said.

The state government has already applied for licence and the decision is pending with the central government. After the licence is issued, the state will set up FM radio stations in selected schools and relay programmes, the official said.

The core programming will be done in Patna and the peripheral programming in the districts. The channels would host phone-in programmes featuring guest lectures, career counselling, and quizzes based on general and subject knowledge.

According to a government estimate, the cost of setting up one Community Radio Station (CRS), including equipment and installation charges, is nearly Rs.480,000.

The cost of studio, which would be optional, would be Rs.230,000. The operational cost per radio station, as worked out by the government, is Rs. 46,965 per month while the expected monthly revenue per CRS is Rs. 50,400.

Sixty per cent of the cost will be borne by the human resources development department of the state and the remaining will be taken as loan from banks.

Half-a-dozen schools in Patna were selected and five in Nalanda, the home district of chief minister Nitish Kumar. 'We were told by our class teacher that the government would set up a FM radio station in school. It is a big step,' Aprajita Singh, a student of Bankipore Girls High School, said.

Another student of the same school, Sanjana Kumari, said they were excited after being told that they would learn new things through FM radio station. 'The experience will be different,' she said.

Ramesh Ranjan, a student of Miller High School, said the FM radio station would help the students to connect to the changing world. 'It will be handy for us,' he said.
My opinion of education in India is that it has become a joke, actually more of a way to torture students. I studied in the same system until I was 14, and today I would be slaving away for some Engineering seat even if I hated Maths!!!

Because in India, the only 3 professions that parents seem to want to push their kids into is either Doctor, Engineer or IT.

The worst aspect of the system is rote learning, everything is memorization (including science!!), the only honourable exception was Maths. The teacher would give her answers for the questions at the end of each chapter, you were to memorize each answer and paste them on tests or exams. this was the worst in English or Social Science. There is no thinking involved, you are like some robot carrying out commands, in comparison my English classes in Canada NEVER required you to memorize a single answer for tests or exams, you are to come up with the answer on the spot, you didn't know the questions beforehand because they were made up by the teacher not from the back of the textbook. For example you maybe asked to read an article and say whether you agree with the authors main point or not and the reasons for it. So there was no studying involved for an English final exam, you could either think up the answer or not.

In contrast the education system in India just wants you to memorize everything and copy paste it, that doesn't need much thinking at all.

Also nowadays there is the added pressure of getting a seat (or you can buy your way into one if you are rich enuf), so the only thing kids there do is study, not much extracurricular activities like sports or anything (and then we wonder why perform so poorly in sports besides cricket).

Let me give you an example, there is some long distance relative of mine, she is 14 now, from the age of 12 or 13 she was put in some private school which charges high prices, anyway she leaves home at 8:30 or somthing and is let out at 7 in the evening, i don't think that is the way 13 yr olds are meant to spend their life, recently I found out she got eye sight, wonder if all that "studying" has something to do with it. I am not even exaggerating, the last year I studied in India, our school decided that from grade 7 onwards the kids were to be kept there until 7 in the evening if i remember correctly, anyway I skipped those sessions for a while and then stopped going to school altogether for the last 3 or so months before we came to Canada.

This idea that kids can be tortured (there is no other way to put keeping 13 yr olds in school frm 9 to 7) into "studying" and this will produce world class graduates is nonsense as the Finnish (and other examples like Germany) show:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->High-school students here rarely get more than a half-hour of homework a night. They have no school uniforms, no honor societies, no valedictorians, no tardy bells and no classes for the gifted. There is little standardized testing, few parents agonize over college and kids don’t start school until age 7.

Yet by one international measure, Finnish teenagers are among the smartest in the world. They earned some of the top scores by 15-year-old students who were tested in 57 countries. American teens finished among the world’s C students even as U.S. educators piled on more homework, standards and rules. Finnish youth, like their U.S. counterparts, also waste hours online. They dye their hair, love sarcasm and listen to rap and heavy metal. But by ninth grade they’re way ahead in math, science and reading — on track to keeping Finns among the world’s most productive workers.

Perhaps its time to take a good look at our British inspired beauracracy and education system (designed to produce good brown sahibs for the British) and make the necessary changes.
<!--emo&:ind--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/india.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='india.gif' /><!--endemo--> HindustanTimes.com » HT Next » Trendy Teens » Education » News

Students work in fields with farmers

Kohima, June 13, 2008

Students pursuing agriculture courses in Nagaland are literally getting an hands-on experience - working in the fields with farmers for three months to get a better understanding of the agri business and aspects of rural development.

The students are being exposed to aspects of production and marketing of agriculture under the Rural Agriculture Work Experience (RAWE) programme.

The Nagaland University in co-ordination with the State Agriculture Department conducts RAWE for B.Sc (Agri) students of School of Agriculture Science and Rural Development (SASARD), university officials said.

Recently a field demonstration was conducted for final year B.Sc (Agri) students in six villages in Jalukie area under Peren district.

Jalukie valley is the rice bowl of the state and the area is known for its high value organic products, officials said.

This was not simply a single visit, but the students stayed in the villages for three months since March and were practically involved in production and marketing, agriculture department officials said.

The programme was designed to let the students acquire competence in the frontier areas of technology, managerial skills, agri-business as well as to handle real life situations, officials said.

Demonstration on various agricultural technologies were conducted by the students in their respective villages.

Different topics were selected on the basis of the need and importance of the technology in the selected village.

The students were given full guidance on methodologies involved in the demonstration by subject experts and the programme supervisor, officials said.

In all demonstration schedules farmers also participated with great enthusiasm, they said.

Senior professors from NU and agriculture officials attended the final demonstrations where students, teachers and farmers deliberated on development of an efficient marketing network of agri produces in Nagaland.

Meanwhile, with declaration of year 2006 and 2007 as the Year of farmers, the state government put maximum efforts to strengthen the Agriculture Produces Marketing Committees (APMCs) in each district to make agri business cost effective and remunerative.

<!--emo&:thumbsup--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/thumbup.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='thumbup.gif' /><!--endemo--> SERVE faced maximum resistance from West Bengal. “The Left Front Government does not want the system to take roots here as it will create a thinking mass which cannot be controlled,” says MacCarthaigh.

He, however, found support from the La Martiniere for Girls’ where the system is used in the lower classes. The students are learning far better with less stress and fear of examinations. Hopefully, more and more schools will take lessons from MacCarthaigh’s module.
<b>State teachers should accept CBSE syllabus </b>
By <b>Kancha Ilaiah </b>

<b>The Andhra Pradesh government has brought about a radical reform in the school education system of the state by transforming 6,500 government schools from Telugu medium to English medium at one go.</b>

The government order issued by the government also says that the schools would adopt the Central Board of Secondary Education syllabus.

As of now, almost all the private English medium schools in the state teach only the State Board syllabus which is not written by experts. Nor has it been discussed in any proper forum.

When compared to the CBSE syllabus, our state board syllabus is a substandard one. It is easier to teach a course that is written by experts.

Most of the CBSE material has been drawn from the NCERT text books which have been written by experts known for specialisations in their respective field of study.

At the same time, several teachers’ unions are opposing the GO on the ground that they cannot teach such a high-quality syllabus, that too in English medium.

They also say that the government has imposed the English medium stream without any proper preparation and are complaining about lack of adequate infrastructure in these schools.

In the GO, the education department gave a detailed explanation on how the rural poor — particularly the children belonging to SC, ST, OBCs — are deprived of English medium education and thereby denied employment avenues.

The GO says the intention of the reform was to "make available the option of English medium education to the children of rural small and marginal farmers, agricultural labour, SC/ST/BC families, urban poor and slum dwellers in an equitable manner together with the others."

These English medium sections will be parallel to Telugu medium sections that already exist. The Telugu medium stream is not being closed down as alleged by some organisations. English medium would be a parallel stream but it would move up to Class XII and not end at Class X.

The GO says that all these schools will be strengthened under the central scheme of Strengthening and Universalisation of Quality and Access to Secondary Schools.

It appears that the government is trying to mobilise about Rs 750 crores both from state and Central resources to improve the physical and academic infrastructure of schools by establishing teacher training centres and "English labs," apart from supplying more English books.

There are also proposals to merge high schools adjacent to each other to make them more efficient and also do away with upper primary schools of certain type.

Along with this, the government should also make available school buses to students who have to travel long distances as well as mid-day meal to poor children, even during vacations.

It is also said that every school will get a developmental fund of Rs 1 crore under this new scheme. If that is so the very structural existence of the schools would change. When the government is proposing such a comprehensive educational reform why should teachers’ unions oppose it?

It is understandable if the associations of private English medium schools and private Intermediate colleges oppose it, since this scheme will force them to undergo a radical change.

<b>Both the government and the teachers’ unions should realise that the Telugu medium stream in these schools will not survive for long simply because after a while parents would not prefer to retain their children in Telugu medium.</b>

With the launch of the new scheme, the Intermediate board will also become redundant and the vast number of private Intermediate colleges will have to close down or change into schools.

Once the school education system becomes uniform we should ask for abolition of entrance examinations to all streams as this system has created corporate racketeering institutions. The entrance system is playing havoc with the poor but brilliant students.

One is really shocked and surprised at the opposition of Left teachers’ unions to this systemic reform. They should know many Leftist scholars were involved in penning the NCERT textbooks. Many of them have done a wonderful job of writing good and simple material for every course.

In fact, they should have demanded that we should adopt only NCERT text books and nothing else and should also have sought translation of the same books into Telugu.

You should have bolded this line in your post:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->One is really shocked and surprised at the opposition of Left teachers’ unions to this systemic reform. <b>They should know many Leftist scholars were involved in penning the NCERT textbooks.</b> Many of them have done a wonderful job of writing good and simple material for every course.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->One is really shocked and surprised at the opposition of Left teachers’ unions to this systemic reform. <b>They should know many Leftist scholars were involved in penning the NCERT textbooks.</b> Many of them have done a wonderful job of writing good and simple material for every course.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Arun Shourie's book "EMINENT HISTORIANS: Their Technology, Their Line, Their Fraud (read review)" is must read if one has to really understand the fraud perpetrated by these two bit political hacks masquerading as history scholars.
If you are a history buff buy this book in India, the Amazon link (above) lists some ridiculous price (though one could argue that it's worth every penny).
Does India have any standardized tests like the SAT that all students have to take?

As far as I am aware, 7th and 10th grade exams are marked by the state but I don't know of any standardized tests.

I think its important that such tests are introduced and gifted children identified based on their performance and channelled into research rather than IT or some other mundane job.

I mean gifted in the sense of Euler, Gauss, Ramanujan etc that show an ability to think out of the box in certain areas.
NOT compulsoy for all kids, though:

We has statewide scholarships in which 300 kids statewide would be selected. THis was only in 4 and 7 grade. Scholarship winners get a monthly stipend too (very very small). Verbal, analytical, and maths were tested.
And then Bombay Talent Search and Maharashtra TS in 9th and 11th I think. Those had all sciences.

Thanks for the info Shambhu, I think its important that some compulsory tests be started, also scholarships would be better served a little later on than grade 4 or 7, maybe in 9th or 10th if they show exceptional talent.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->And then Bombay Talent Search and Maharashtra TS in 9th and 11th I think. Those had all sciences.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
We never had equivalents of these in AP as far as I am aware.
Grade 12 textbook chapter full of commie propaganda:

<!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo--> This Bangalore lunch scheme was such an unqualified success that four students of Harvard Business School (HBS) took it up as a case study.

Three of the four students- David Upton, Amy Yamner, Christine Ellis and Sarah Lucas- visited Bangalore, Jaipur and Baran in 2006 to study the scheme. Christine told TOI that it was an HBS tradition for international students to visit their home countries and she came to India with a Bangalore student. They stopped by at Akshaya Patra, an NGO which feeds 8.3 lakh students every day and wants to tackle the two problems of hunger and poverty through this path-breaking effort.

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