Spotlight: Falling grades, losing humanity

With the education system facing a paradigm shift after the Covid-19 outbreak, children undoubtedly are losing out on the charm of campus life.
The young generation is missing their time spent in the school decorum, books and friends.
“I hope the schools are open and the children are back to normal, as I cannot see my children losing their personality building, as online education keeps them away from many things and are getting addicted to the world of cyberspace” a concerned mother said.
Shocking is the news that it is taking a toll on their grades, education level and understanding of the subject. For parents, it is something alarming which needs to be seriously looked at.
Amita Sharma, Director of Al Injaz Private School, says the pandemic has affected students’ levels of learning.

THE FEAR FACTOR
“The children are constantly in an environment at home, society or school, where they are repeatedly told about the dangers of Covid-19 and measures to stay safe. This has, in effect, created in the mind of the child, the fear of falling ill and dying.”
Most of the students were happy when physical school reopened and they could get back to the normal mode of learning at the schools with their friends and teachers. However, the increase in the number of cases has made parents decide to opt for virtual learning for their children once again, keeping in mind their safety.
Many children seem to be heading towards depression as they are missing out social interactions, which is an important factor for the healthy development of a child.
Worldwide, the governments are making efforts to support the schools and the education system by reducing the portions to reduce the pressure to complete lessons.
“We have virtual as well as physical school going on side by side. The school is trying its best to keep up the children’s spirits by conducting online activities along with academics and helping them cope with learning. Still the drop in academic levels is noticed”, adds Amita Sharma, Director, Al Injaz Private School.
The deputy head of a leading school told the Observer on a lighter note that children might be losing on so many
things. However, they are gaining on various aspects such as smartness, technical know-how etc.
“Our children may be losing on their educational levels but they are getting smarter in the sense that they know how to evade the attention of the teacher online, they know how to outsmart the teachers in terms of technological know-how’’, he said.
Another head of an institution said online learning has reduced the studies to 30 per cent from face-to-face interaction due to so many factors.

STRESSED OUT
“Children are stressed. The online and offline evaluation systems are different. We cannot apply the offline evaluation system to online education.
When i say children are stressed out, I mean they are continuously getting paranoiac towards many factors and they are even afraid if the connection would go out during the course of their studies or exams which badly affects their studies and this is a natural stress while facing a challenge.”
They admit that most of the educationists are not supporting online education due to factors like these. When they are stressed out, studying anything is difficult.

MISSING ON THE EARLY MORNING STUDY
Children are reluctant to wake up early in the morning and as a result, they are missing out on studying in the wee hours which, according to experts, is the best time to comprehend academics as his or her brain is so fresh and adaptable to ideas. This is because online studies begin late, say, by 9 or 10 am. No wonder the parents complain that online education is not giving sufficient time as the case used to be during the classroom education

LACKING PERSONAL HYGIENE
Other teachers complained that children are also lax in their personal hygiene whereas they were used to the proper personal hygiene and making their routine work. Many straight head to the computer as soon as they wake up resulting in being unable to maintain decorum in their personal life. “Many times, I’ve seen children yawning and sleeping in front of the computer as parents cannot be blamed because they get busy with their work’’, a teacher said.

TENDENCY TO CHEAT
ON TEACHERS
They cheat on the teachers as well as parents by keeping themselves busy with online sports and games and they keep many pages open during the course of teaching. “Isn’t it a paradox that we are forced to encourage them to be on phone or laptop or tab continuously whereas we were dead against them spending more time on technical gizmos?’’, asks an Indian school teacher, adding that “these unhealthy habits can lead to serious health issues as they spend more time on these gadgets than they are required to.”

PSYCHIC ISSUES
Many parents have complained to the counsellors that their kids are aggressive and violent when they are denied access to these gadgets. Counsellors, when we spoke to them, admitted that the number of parents approaching them for advice has nearly tripled as kids turn rebellious, often violent when they are not given these gadgets which are the only way out for them to vent out their emotions. “This sort of behaviour is the result of some sort of enzymes being produced in the brain while spending time for online games and other activities.”

LOSING HUMAN CONTACT
“Most importantly’’, says a senior teacher, “these children are losing on human contact as they create their own world in the virtual space and facing human beings will be a challenge for the future generations. When children are fed with just equations, formulas and information as priorities, they are lacking on humanity because human relations are taking a back seat. He will be far from a human being. In this case, what we, parents can do is to educate them on morals, values and human interactions so that more than an academic product, he would be a true human being in the future’’, adds he.

 

KABEER YOUSUF
@kabeeryousef