How screwed up is our system?

“You ≠Your Grades”

“What makes a child gifted and talented may not always be good grades in school, but a different way of looking at the world and #learning.”

This is what was posted by the National Digital Library of India on their Facebook page on the day when all the students across India were awaiting their results – some anxious, some casual, some relaxed. And I agree with the aforementioned words. We really shouldn’t let our grades decide our lives; however, the reality is far it.

Those aforementioned words by the National Digital Library of India got me thinking – do those words even play their role in real life? I do consider the truth in those words, but, our society is such that we are judged on the basis of our grades. It is not just on grades that we are judged on, but, also the on the college we pass out of.

Since, the time we enter 5th grade or, even before, we are always pestered about how we should score good marks in our Boards so that we can be admitted into a good college. Here, ‘good marks’ doesn’t mean marks enough to pass out, but, to marks which make you the topper or at least get you into the first class. Why? So, that your life is not ruined.

There’s this formula that many parents in India live by:-

Good Marks = Good, Reputed College/University

Good, Reputed College/University = Good Job (or preference during selection for a job)

Good Job = Life set!

In short, Good Marks = Life set!

And parents get so obsessed over the kids’ marks that there’s no stop to the amounts they would go to just to ensure that their kids are concentrating only on studies, and are not distracted by T.V., mobiles, and so on. But, they don’t even realize the pressure they put on their kids, so much that some students end up taking their lives.

Of course, this so-called decision of the parents to ensure their kids’ life is not ruined does not stop just at their marks. Many a times, whether you are the topper or a first class student, you can forget to choose your own path in life. Indian parents have this thought that their kids should choose a stream or career that gets them good money, or in other words, a hefty sum, and not what makes them happy. Because,

Hefty sum for a salary = Good hand in marriage

However, when their kids fail in the boards, that’s an altogether different cruelty the kids are put through. Everyone, not just the parents, but, other relatives (yes, same relatives who don’t wish you during on birthday, but, are totally missing you when it’s D-Day), start acting as if it is the end of your life. Like your life is ruined. Like you are useless. And everyone starts looking at you like you are a pest, a burden, a worthless existence. The kids who fail in the boards never hear the end of the nagging (not just from the parents, but, relatives, and even neighbours – through their parents). They start to feel small in everyone’s eyes, even in the eyes of the locality’s dogs.

These pressures are not just from parents, but, also from the teachers and professors. I am sure every one of us must have heard at least once from at least one professor or teacher – Now, you are in boards, so concentrate only on studies. If this wasn’t enough imagine the pressure the education system putting on the students.

Even the education system has its own formula:-

Write more (more content) = More marks

How do you expect a student who is disinterested in the field he/she has chosen to write more?

Why can’t a short, right, qualitative answer get more marks compared to a 2-3 pages answer for a 5 marks question?

What happens if the students then score low marks because there wasn’t enough content in their answer sheets? The vicious cycle continues – pressure from parents, relative, neighbours, watchman, dogs, rats, amoeba, the whole world……….


Stop before the kids lose their sanity.

Stop before the kids lose themselves.

Stop before you lose your kids.

Let them do what they want (legal things, of course). At least they will be happy. At least they will live to call you tomorrow and have a meal with you. At least you will still have your kids.

And a message to all the students, just as posted by the National Digital Library of India in the end,

“It is a pivotal exam in life, if you do well it is great but if you don’t, please remember, it’s not the end of your life.”


– Miss Fujoshi


Here’s the link to National Digital Library of India’s Facebook page:

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