Essay on National Education is written by M. K. Gandhi, one of the greatest Indo-Anglian writers. In this essay, Gandhiji has dealt wills the real defects of our present system of education. At some time he had also presented his views on national education intending to remove the defects present in it. Though Gandhiji wrote this article in 1921, its theme is quite a relevant event today.
According to the essayist, the existing system of education in our country is defective as it is based upon foreign cultures to the almost entire exclusion of indigenous culture.
Then again it is related only to the culture of the head and it ignores the culture of the heart and the hand. So far as its medium is concerned it is quite foreign through which real education can never be given.
Our present education system has no correspondence with home life. It is designed to separate a student from his traditional culture. From the very beginning of his student life, a student in our country is taught such books which have nothing to deal with his real-life as also with his homely affairs.
These books never inspire a student to have any pride in his surroundings. In fact, “his civilization is presented to him as an imbecile, barbarous. superstitious and useless for all practical purposes.”
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Hence Gandhiji advocated destroying the majority of the present textbooks and to write such books which have a hearing on the correspondence with home life.
While referring to another defect of the present system of education in our country, Gandhiji makes it clear that it prepares only literate youth who are not fit for any manual work.
Ours is predominantly an agricultural country, and as such, it is a crime to make education merely literary, At some times this system is quite expensive.
In such a condition the present system of education should be changed. First of all manual training should be introduced so that the students -may learn the value of work and they may become self-reliant.
Then the children should be made to pay in labor partly or wholly for all the education they receive. According to the writer, his arrangement will be doubly profitable. On the one hand, it will pay for education and on the other, it will enable the pupils to fall back upon sell- employment in their afterlife.
In the present system of education, the relationship between the teacher and the taught has become artificial and mechanical. Gandhiji is not satisfied with this because in such a situation the students can never learn the culture of the heart and the hand.
He is of the view that the goal of true education can be achieved only through the loving touch of the teacher. For this purpose, the teachers should be men and women of faith and character and they should be selected on the ground of patriotism.
The greatest tragedy of the existing system of education is its medium which is based on foreign languages. The foreign medium has r children practically foreigners in their land. Hence, Gandhi ji makes it clear that vernaculars should be the media of instruction so that the children may get rid of brain-bag and undue strain upon their nerves.
Essay on National Education
But he also admits that the richest treasures of thought and literature and the knowledge of diplomacy and world trade can only be achieved through a foreign language.
In brief, for the prosperity of our motherland and the happiness of our people, the present system of education must be changed. The national education policy should be prepared given the crying mead of the time. wiki