Education in Goa

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The education system in Goa needs a de-schooling. We are schooled in a very old model of education.  Hence, have to de-school ourselves. There are myths that we may have to give up: 

  1. Teaching produces learning …. teaching may not produce learning …
  2. Grades  indicate performance …  quantifiable evaluation may miss qualitative 
  3. Decrees equate competence …. competence without degrees is possible. 

Today these myths are questioned.  Our education system has to produce competent citizens  Hence, I  propose that our present education system requires a  paradigm shift. 

We need to move from Medium of Instruction debate to mode of instruction Dialogue.  Unfortunately, we are wasting our energy on an issue that is best kept to the parents.  The debate on the mode of instruction opens issues the pathetic infrastructure, pedagogies employed, issues of reservation, etc. 

This paradigm shift to the mode of instruction can convert our educational institutions from being spaces of Knowledge consumption to spaces of active knowledge production. This requires a change in infrastructure where we can inscribe modes of learning in the architecture of the building. For instance, the protector that measures the angles can be put at the door of the class and as the door moves students can measure angles, the staircase can be numbered or inscribed with alphabets which can mean that the students can learn them as they come up and down, we can have geometrical figures into the grills, images of animals, maps, tree and fruits etc on our walls. The infrastructure needs to be imagined in such a way that it becomes educative or facilitates learning.

Besides infrastructure, we need to revisit our pedagogy employed. Today we have mainly teacher-driven education.  We need to change this. We can bring about a student-driven education model too.  We have to employ active learning methods rather than what we have been using which transform our students into passive and silent learners. Active learning mode will enable the students to use both the left and right side of the brain and thus bring about integral participation in the project of learning.   We have to lead our students to become a learning community and transform the classroom into a learning space. We require to introduce new pedagogical methods that trigger, stimulate and produce active learning in our classrooms. Activity-based learning, active engagement of the students through problem-solving methods, Kagan structures etc are methods of knowledge production with the active participation of the students. The introduction of technology in Education can assist us too. 

‘The heart of education is the education of the heart ‘.   Our education cannot produce heartless citizens.  I am pained to see that some of our highly educated citizens have joined terror groups like ISIS  as well as those indulging in Cow vigilantism etc. Hence, I propose that we require to introduce Peace Education at all levels in our education, beginning with Schools.  Just like physical education we need also peace education. 

We need to worry about the quality of education at a higher level. Goa can lead education by converting our Government institutions into institutions of learning par excellence.  Can the Government colleges become autonomous? Will, it does not take our education to a new level of excellence?  We will have to invent ways of leading our professional Colleges to rise their ladder of excellence that fosters creativity and brilliance and not stagnate by hoping at the same spot.  We need to look at performance and ensure high standards of learning. 

 

 

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GREETINGS

Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.

- Fr Victor Ferrao