Future of our students

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It is a matter worth rejoicing that the overall pass percentage in the High School Leaving Certificate (Class X) examination of 2019 conducted by the Secondary Education Board, Assam – SEBA – has crossed 60. Of the 3,42,702 students who had taken the crucial examination, as many as 2,02,508 have come out successful, with the overall pass percentage jumping by about four over 2018. What is most interesting is that girls have outshone boys again, with as many as 20 girls occupying the top 10 positions. The first position too has been clinched by a girl student Meghashree Borah of Sankardev Shishu Vidya Niketan of Narayanpur in Lakhimpur district. The overall pass percentage of girl students however was slightly behind the boy students; while the overall pass percentage among boy students has been 62.69, that o the girl students has been 57.99 per cent. This brings to the fore that something somewhere is not all right with our girl students. They have the same talent as the boys. Thus there should not have been any reason why lesser number of girls should have cleared the crucial Class X examination. Are our girl students not getting the same kind of facilities in the schools? Are there constraints that stand in the way of our girl students attending school regularly? Are girls being held back from attending school by the parents under various pretexts? Is the overall health and nutrition status of our girl students poor in comparison to that of boys? Another question that comes to mind as the HSLC examination results are being declared is – are there enough seats in the Higher Secondary or plus-two stage in our state so that all the two lakh successful candidates can continue their studies? Will all the successful candidates be able to find the right stream to join, be it Science, Arts, or Commerce? Are there other vocational courses available for the sizeable chunk of students who want to prepare for an early career instead of pursuing higher studies? More importantly, are our teachers and parents informed enough to guide the two lakh students in choosing the correct and suitable course of education after Class X? Are our educational institutions – from Higher Secondary upwards – really equipped with the right kind of courses for our future citizens, or are they only functioning as a stop-gap arrangement for students to obtain a degree that does not lead them to anywhere worthwhile and just make them educated unemployed?