"Educationists should build the capacities of the spirit of inquiry, creativity, entrepreneurial and moral leadership among students and become their role model." - Abdul Kalam
Currently there is a growing indiscipline in Indian educational institutions and it is time we addressed this issue earnestly to shell out quality students who can grow as good citizens. Students are more demanding in terms of knowledge, freedom and facilities. They are becoming rights-oriented rather than duty-oriented without realizing the fact that duties and rights are two sides of the same coin. This is a cause for concern for both faculty and parents.
At home, parents find it tough to meet their expectations, and in educational institutions, faculty finds it tough to match their aspirations. It is leading to the gap between the faculty and the students which needs to be bridged quickly apart from creating a generational differences between the parents and the children.
In every classroom, we find all kinds of students. Some are extraordinarily good and well behaved; majority remains mediocre; and a few become trouble makers for other students and faculty. The best brains and dedicated students with a passion to learn and grow in the classroom don't associate with these trouble makers. However, some of the mediocre students often fall prey to these trouble makers due to peer pressure and age pressure.
There are several reasons for the present student unrest. Some of the notorious students are rich and come to colleges due to parental pressure. They don't concentrate on education. On the other hand, they instigate other students to get into their wrong track. The students who are immature are often tempted and get into this rotten zone to create problems for faculty in the classroom and for other dedicated students. Some of the unscrupulous students come to educational institutions to earn paper qualifications as they already have successful family run businesses. It is observed that some of the girls are not behind boys, and are notorious for making nuisance and trouble for other good students and faculty. They don't respect faculty and they spread rumors in the campus. If faculty takes action, they give negative feedback to the faculty. Hence, faculty is not in a position to take serious action against such notorious students. The owners of the educational institutions are aware of the gravity of the situation but they are unable to take any action against such notorious students as most of them hail from political and money background. When faculty complains to their parents, the latter express their inability to discipline their children at home. It is unfortunate that some of the students are influenced by violence and sex. A few notorious students drink liquor and come to campus. They imbibe negative things easily rather than the positive things.
Although the problem appears to be extreme and complex there are number remedial steps to be taken to inculcate discipline in the campus to shell out students with positive and right attitude. Here are some of the steps for consideration:
Take attendance regularly and follow-up with their parents.
Appoint student counselors who can counsel them about their future.
Hire a psychologist for the educational institution who can understand the pulse of the students to reform and put them in the right track. The psychologist can conduct motivational training programs regularly. In this way, we can also check alarming suicides in students.
Call the parents of students periodically to the campus and share the status of students. Inform parents if there is misconduct, irregularity in attendance or poor academic performance.
Faculty must play a crucial role to bring erring students on the track with tact and diplomacy. They must make students aware about their future and explain the pros of good behavior and cons of bad behavior.
Emphasize Indian culture and ethical values through ethical education. Enlighten them that it is tough to climb the ladder and easy to fall from the top.
Dr. Kalam's Assertive Communication
Faculty must be assertive from the beginning itself to ensure discipline in students. They must adopt assertive communication to discipline students. Assertive communication is the art of saying no firmly but politely to students to bring out the desired behavioral improvement. I had an opportunity to attend Dr. APJ Kalam's speech on March 29, 2013. A few students were shouting during his speech. Dr. Kalam discontinued his speech and told to students with a smile in an assertive tone, "My dear students! I know that you all are well behaved. Please maintain silence." Then students maintained silence and Dr. Kalam resumed his speech. Hence, faculty must take a leaf out of Dr. Kalam's assertive communication to discipline students.
Role of Faculty in Educational Institutions
The faculty must be clear about the dos and don'ts and make sure that students comply with them. They must avoid pre-conceived notions about erring students. They must have an open mind to reform and transform erring students. They must not interfere into the personal lives of students. They must limit themselves to sharing knowledge and inculcating ethical values in students. They must ensure the dignity of students in the classroom with a win-win attitude. They must walk their talk, and be ethical and moral. Above all, they must demonstrate a strong character and stand by ethics and etiquette.
Role of Students in Educational Institutions
Students have a crucial role to play to ensure campus and classroom discipline. They must realize the fact that they come to college to acquire knowledge to grow as good citizens. Teaching is a noble profession where faculty doesn't come to college to make money but to earn respect. Students must understand this fact and empathize with the faculty and support them wholeheartedly to create a conducive learning ambience. Remember, an extraordinary faculty can be demotivated by a few rotten students and an ordinary faculty can be motivated by a few good students with great attitude. Although it is the faculty who inspires and shapes students, they also get inspired by a few good students because they are also human beings who needs constant motivation pill.
Build a better India
The objective of educational institutions is not only to shell out employable and deployable students but also committed and dedicated students who will grow as good citizens. To conclude, there must be coordinated efforts between parents, faculty, students, educational institutions and Non-Governmental Organizations to shell out committed and dedicated students to build a better India. Jai Hind!
"It is not what is poured into a student that counts but what is planted." - Linda Conway
Prof. M.S. Rao
International Leadership Guru
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