Are we stealing our children’s joy?

I recently heard that 17 kids got 100 percentile in IITJEE Mains. I wasn’t sure if we should celebrate or feel sad. Here is why.

About half of these toppers (8 out of 17) came from the erstwhile Andhra Pradesh (now AP and Telangana). What is so special about these states?

They have a coaching system that resembles an academic prison, which lacs of students join every year. In fact, these coaching centers have a network of middlemen who fan out across the state and grab any good student before their rival does.

If our system to catch and train young athletes was so efficient, we would probably outcompete China in the Olympics.

These kids then go through a 14-16 hr daily grind with just one objective — to crack IITJEE or NEET. There is no thought given to extracurriculars, mental or physical health, or socialization.

One particular coaching in Karnataka has expressly banned the boys and girls from talking to each other — apparently, that is how you build discipline. What mindset are we inculcating in these kids?

I am a hardcore fan of science and math, but not every kid is. We can’t impose our choice on our children.

Also, we need balance. I so wish, as a kid, I had learned some musical instruments or played sports.

By pushing kids to get 100/100, are we not draining out all their energy and creativity? If so, is the price not too high?

Our children are not our property. We have no right to rob them of their childhood.

– Rajan


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