By Alhaj Muhammad Khan
For the last few years we have seen enormous and complex changes in the learning community of Chitral. The wave of globalization and competition among the schools and students has strong bearing on the holistic development of children in Chitral. It has been witnessed this year on the declaration of the SSC and HSSC results of different boards that unhealthy competition and weak resiliency of some students has taken many lives. Since this year result declaration we feel the echo of the last calls of few students for help. Some incidences of suicides and attempts reported in the newspapers of Chitral and the editorial note on the topic in the e-paper of Chitral is a testimony of identification and highlighting the aspects leading to take such kind of decisions by the learners. The issue of psychological stress during examination and exam mania during preparation in school, hostels and homes came to light through different peoples engaged with education in Chitral. School is basically a complex of different elements that make it a centre for learning. School infrastructure and environment, parents and the teacher plays a very important role for holistic development of a child in the pre and prime age. For the pre-training of the children ‘Early Childhood Development’ (ECD) move/system has already been introduced in Chitral and completion of its cyclical process whether it was beneficial or not for the Children, be assessed by conducting research. Its influence to win over the challenges that learners are facing particularly and society generally would be the case topic for this study. Anyhow time will decide on the positive and negative aspects of this system in students and societal development.
A system founded without a vision and mission, would be called a moving ship without a direction. Only that system continues to reach its destination earlier, in time and later which runs with a mission. Working on its vision would be a criterion for measuring its ability and performance during the given period of time. The process for achieving set goals, gives a clear indication where the areas to be improved further after each evaluation of its performance. Identified area then, would be the subject/topic for studies and this process continues accordingly towards improvement.
It is also necessary for a system to be the part of the educational process otherwise getting shortcuts with a purpose to achieve the set targets might have had adverse impact on the sustainable and durable development of a system.
For making a system in congruent with the worldly demands synchronizing with the particular culture what it allows to practice, is the necessary step to be taken in time to redress the indiscretion has been made during educational process in Chitral. It must be a call for get-together for all systems working in Chitral both in public and private sector, contemplating on and making an organized force to challenge what they are facing in different forms.
All the stake holders need their individual and collective efforts and support to grasp the areas where further improvement is necessary for sustainable and durable development of learning community in Chitral. Each system must deem itself responsible for all stakeholders including parents, teachers and students. Making this troika strong and self –supporting would further help better channelising school resources and achieving educational objectives in the area with combined efforts. Modern research says that Parents’ has a major role in the development of a child because he/she spends out of 4/6 hours with his parents at home. It shows that more time demands more expectations and support on the part of parents to deal with the issues facing children, would be worth productive. The day each system is cooperative and responsive to the circumstances occurring in different forms, the culture of healthy competition will prevail and it will let the lively and conducive culture of learning to prevail and it takes root gradually in society.
The emerging trend in the operational education system of Chitral should no longer be let unnoticed. The symptoms like drop outs, disinterest with studies, killing time in school and at home may take other shapes i.e. psychological disorder and stress leading ultimately to suicide; by losing heart and hope. This is what because of the inability to compete with the fellows due to many reasons and challenges. And students do know that survival without competition is not possible in the global village.
Now the problem demands sincere and collective endeavour of all the systems working in Chitral. The individuals, community and organizations managing, organizing, running and directing systems are responsible to come together for maintaining and sustaining the educational culture necessary for developing conducive environment for holistic development of the learners. The phenomenon of dependency of one system on another is the pre-condition for coexistence in society. Responsibility of parents has further increased at home and teachers in school to strengthen their endeavour for this common mission. It is also necessary that student should have the realization to learn in stage of learning. Learning environment makes learning effective when it subsist both at home and School because moral, educational and psychological support for a child in time of growth is central says research.
Subtle call of children from different systems in Chitral for help is a matter to be considered. How to support learner’s to be able to adjust with the competitive environment developing in Chitral is a question to be answered. There are more challenges for the systems working in Chitral as compared to the urban ones. One way to tackle the issues might be following the responsive steps coming from different peoples, students and systems, to suffocate the actual problems in time before getting complex. Being engaged with education for the last four years in private sector I come across a major problem that the working systems in Chitral are neither they cooperative nor willing to cooperate in terms of learning from one another. However, the corps engaged with education in Chitral would have to realize now their stands in the face of recent challenges and influence to bring about meaningful changes for rationalising emerging trends. The day would comprehend it; they can take over the problems easily by utilizing their handful resources. They believe unfortunately in the obsolete practice of self-existence. This mindset weakens their force to combat challenges that a student faces while living in and leaving Chitral in SSC and HSSC level. This is another important question for timely response. Here again the role of teacher increases with the parents and the organizations working in counseling sector of society. Since the triangle of parents, teacher and student gets weak in any system of education, the development process can’t covers its course. It creates more challenges for all stakeholders within a system.
Educational systems (Schools and Colleges) working both in public and private sector of Chitral while considering the emerging trends of suicides in Chitral among SSC and HSSC level students, must collectively develop ways either to get the services of a psychotherapist for short time redressal of the problem of the students during their studies in their prime age or some teachers be trained from schools; for dealing with these problems. For long term planning some areas and schools or colleges can be identified in Chitral where the ratio will help to research on the problems what the students are facing both in school and at home. I do request to all educationists, academicians, researchers and teachers to contribute being generous for sharing their ideas and support for developing solution to the emerging problems that the coming generation is facing confused in this complex system as victim of complexities. It is also a question in front of us either we are the part of a system or have nothing to do with it. Any person or a system claims its self-dependence from the operational education system of ‘pick and pull’ of Chitral would be the first responsible for this menace.