Constructive discussions needed on lapses in education system: Amartya Sen

Last Updated: Wed, Jul 11, 2018 12:05 hrs
Amartya Sen

Kolkata: Constructive discussion is the key to identifying and rectifying the lapses within the education system and many of the flaws continue to exist due to lack of discussions, Nobel laureate economist Amartya Sen said here on Tuesday while releasing a report on West Bengal's primary education.

"If there is any fault or lapse in our educational system, we should try to identify what are the reasons of those lapses. We should know whether it is the lack of our insight or enthusiasm about education or it is the lack of financial aid to run the educational system. It is very important to hold constructive discussions on these matters," Sen said while launching the report by Pratichi Trust founded by the economist himself in 1999.

"The idea of holding discussions about the education system is not new but even during the current study, it has been repeatedly found that due to the lack of discussions certain lapses in the education system continue to exist," he said.

Sen said the discussions are necessary because we can learn a lot of things from each other through this and take the discussions towards constructive criticism.

"Once the lapses are identified, we should discuss the way to find a solution and identify what sort of government aid is necessary to help solve those lapses. I think the importance of discussions should be very high," he said.

Pointing out that entertainment gets a lot more space in the modern day media, the noted economist said such practices should not be encouraged if it pushes important issues like education and healthcare to the back seat.

"There is nothing wrong with entertainment, but if that pushes back the discussions on health and education, then we should be critical about it," he said.

About the primary education system in Bengal, Sen noted that there has been improvement on certain metrics like Pupil Teacher Ratio (PTR) and Professional Development Schools (PDS), but there are many issues that need to be addressed at the state level.

He gave more importance to the government initiatives in the fields of healthcare and education stating that it has worked as the main foundation in all the developed countries.

"It is seen in many countries like Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Taiwan and United States that development of health and education at the fundamental level was immensely responsible for the development of those countries.

"It is seen that government initiatives in these aspects have been more influential in society building. The government initiatives are the main pillars of those countries healthcare and education," he added.