Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tuition overdose

Karachi. Lets get the facts straight. Around forty percent of the students at NED university give tuitions. That’s a big number. Almost all students in Karachi turn to tuitions after year 8 of their school. Hence, NEDians can earn as much as thirty thousand rupees every month.

I had once asked the position holder from our class, “Why do you give tuitions? And why do you charge for it? Education should be spread for free. It should not be used as a means to financial rewards.” His eyes sparkled, the way it used to sparkle when he used to literally drool over the thought of the opposite gender, and said, “We have some financial needs as well.”

Taking to tuitions

Students taking the tuitions say that they do not have good teachers at their schools. Their parents double agree.

So, is it a win-win situation. No. This may be a rude analogy, but kids coming out from the tuition process are like the artificial, domesticated chicken. They have got wings, but don’t know how to fly.

The education system is flawed. Our tutoring, constant tutoring, has made our kids dumb. They are painfully unoriginal. They are one hollow structure, full of disconnected equations, laws and quotations. The ultimate goal for this hollow being is that proverbial big house, luxury car, and a team of helpers. Whoever gets their, gets the crown.

The solution

For the time being, there isn’t any. The people of Karachi, (just being specific to a city), are not ready.They may walk the extra mile to get the most feature packed internet connection, the best Cable TV system. 99 TV stations, anyone?

Then, we make the extra investment. We build a house in a posh locality. Most Pakistani’s spend ninety percent of their income to build that dream home.

Finally, we unite. We unite to uphold the the Sanctity of Muhammad (SAW)’s name.

17 million people is a big crowd. Once they get going, it snowballs into a magnificent avalanche. Even the biggest of tyrants have to give in.

The problem is that we unite only on a select few issues. Most of the times, the issue at hand is more symbolic in nature, than rooted in reality.

The tutor

I asked Ali. “Why do (so many of ) my class fellows give tuitions?”. Ali gave an emotional reply: “Not everybody has wealthy parents. Therefore, some people have to start making money, even while studying.” And then, he fired the final bullet, “Not everybody has the luxury to go back home, and relax all day, sleeping.” He was pointing at me. (I can sleep 14hrs at a stretch.)

Now, to be of any financial help to the family, this poor kid will have to give four to five hours, daily, to get twenty to thirty thousand rupees home. You know what routine does that translate to:

        • 8:00am  –  3:00pm: NED university
        • 5:00pm – 10:00pm: Providing tuitions ($)

Its a disaster. When is this kid going to sit down, and have that idle chat with the whole family? What about his hobbies? When shall he spend some time having fun with his friends?


This tutor has a bright idea. He has found a way out: Party hard at the university, and then work hard at the tuitions. This is a simple, yet realistic plan, since NED literally awards degrees to all the students. Students have to put in some effort to fail over here.

Four years later, we see him, smiling with the degree in his hands. Its a superficial engineer that has been generated. Irony, of ironies; the society needs him. He is low on principles, and that is what all our Project contractors and government agencies need.
Good. So not only did this guy earn a lot of bucks while still a student, he is now going to get even more; bucket loads of money, waiting!

The next stages are the same old: the big house, a pretty wife, some kids, and that dream car.

Any problem?

Absolutely. Disillusionment. The feeling of uselessness. This money making machine gets tired of piling up money over money.

Where's the fun?

The hunger for material success has turned us into sadists. We leap at every opportunity to get some fun, be that at the expense of someone's emotions or physical health.

So today, it is deemed a real entertainment, when two people fight. The fun increases exponentially, as the number of people involved in the fight increase. Ironically, our religion preaches peace, and its a sin to set two animals fighting.

They look deep into people's personal lives; in search of some odd news to be verified.

Fun. None?

The parents can be the solution. In this whole tuition farce, parents are the most to blame. They are the one’s who feed this tuition system. They assume that by giving their kids the best tutor available in the market, they have done their job of parenting.

Parents, especially those oh-so-busy and am-so-rich, should understand that the reason the tutor is teaching your (spoilt) kid is purely financial; he is not on an education crusade. The tutor loses nothing if the kid grows to be an idiot. The parents would have a lot to loose then. Maybe, then they shall try to solve the issue with some more tuitions. More expensive tuitions.

Parents have to understand the psyches of the tutors. They have to realise that their kid may be getting all the good grades; but only after a little bit of cheating, and a lot of rote learning.

Ali disagrees.

He says that with the help of his tutor, a student can learn in 20 minutes, what he would have otherwise grasped in 3 hours, studying on his own.

Ali, for you, this is the movie, 3 idiots. A three hour movie, for you, in just one minute:

  • Friends: Raju + Farhan + Rancho
  • Farhan: Photographer
  • Rancho: Cool + Position holder
  • Place: University
  • Ending: Rancho= Scientist.

Just saved you two hours and fifty nine minutes.


Give me another chance

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