I was dismayed and dejected at a story that a friend’s child told me recently. Having emigrated from India at the tender age of five, it was an adjustment of kinds with the ethos, dialectal, new syllabus and pedagogy. The parents worked hard to give their child a respectable learning experience along with making it extraordinary. It almost seemed like a fairy-tale to them being in this land of opportunity where the supreme strength was in its social impartiality. The child worked hard too and aced at their course work with the pledge to seek admission at a prestigious school (Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology – TJHSST) and later, a top University.
Seemingly, as the child came closer to applying at that eminent school, what they were taught as a child about the veracity about this nation was not true after all. Not only they had to outclass at their studies but also crack-through the admission conditions which were not in their control. This criterion had nothing to do with distinction but a variation of multiplicity where the Asian subgroups were (un)accepted due to their utter size and fineness. One way or another, in pursuit of edifying parity and indoctrinating prospects for those who are disadvantaged, the worthy have been slighted. That too, to make way for averageness at the cost of the imminence of this prodigious land.
While we are beleaguered by this disparity, creating panoramas collectively as a community could have been a practical resolution instead of dichotomizing the children’s ability and dexterity. Wonder if this how Dr. Charles Drew, Physician and Blood Pioneer, W.E.B. Du Bois, Sociologist, Writer, Activist, Katherine Johnson, Mathematician, Physicist, or lately Ralph Alvarez, Chief Operating Officer, McDonald’s USA, or Jovita Carranza, Vice President of Air Operations, UPS and not to name the least, Chang-Lin Tien, UC Berkeley Chancellor and Sanjay Gupta, Neurosurgeon and Chief Medical Correspondent and many other stimuli across all of civilization come about.
Those who’ve inspired and continue to, have destroyed the barricades of creed, discernment, societal exclusion, or socio-economic standing and simply exploited the opportunities however small they were when presented to them, to excel in what they did and in due course became leaders of the world. Education for all must be created as an outreach and not to selectively proliferate variance. If we do that, we are preparing ourselves for uncertainty, confusion, and raising of generations to come that are morally flawed. My friend’s child became so disheartened that their 9th grade was a disaster.
There are numerous questions we need to ask ourselves;
- Does this perspicacity apply to Sports, Entertainment and Politics where certain corporal, preemptive disadvantaged are favored over those who are deemed appropriate and robust?
- Would we want to have medics who have effectively trampled the bell curve?
- Or Engineers whose disintegrating technology judgement is not dependable?
- Can we bridge the gap with enhanced mentoring, coaching and career counseling?
- Can we come together as one to build plethora of appropriate possibilities without having to teach a young mind that despite being the best they are differently able than their friends?
- Can we ensure that school drop-out rate is eradicated?
- Can the education system inculcate vocational curriculum?
With advances towards an unexceptional nearness, there is a shroud of pessimism that is generating unrest and contradicting what this great nation stands for. If we don’t inculcate an environment full of opportunities, together and without the ill-effects of misguided ideologies creeping into the schooling system, we are not only setting up for mediocrity but an insecure future and a doomed economy.