Saving Childhoods

At a typical IITJEE coaching center in Andhra, a student wakes up at 6 am and studies till 10 pm.

For 16 hours, 6 days a week, they slog, with a few short breaks to freshen up, eat, etc. And they do this for years.

Time for sports = 0
Time for extracurriculars and hobbies = 0

These are teenagers, not Indian Military Academy cadets. They are just living their parents’ dreams.

I must confess: I loved IITJEE right from the days I wrote the exam. Even we had to slog, but not to this inhuman level. For long, I believed it to be the best exam in the world.

I am not so sure anymore.

As coaching became better, the competition went up, and so did the difficulty level of questions. And it then became a nightmare.

Part of me still loves some aspects of IITJEE. I love physics and its analytical rigor. But very reluctantly, I have concluded that IITJEE is no longer serving us that well. It needs to change.

I don’t have all the answers but we have to stop making exams harder and harder.

A child should be able to find time for sports, extracurriculars, and hobbies. And pursue studies in a balanced, healthy manner.

Let us allow kids to breathe. Let us spare their childhood.

– Rajan

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