Education is considered of incredible importance in the modern world. From well educated people like Barack Obama and Dr. Manmohan Singh to less educated but intelligent people like Bill Gates and Narendra Modi, everyone advocates for better education facilities, for they believe education is the pillar of a healthy and sound society.
In the modern context, much of education has been handed to private players who charge exorbitant fees to educate young students. This seriously undermines the altruistic nature of education, much more so in a country like India where students are supposed to consider their Gurus as equivalent to Gods.
Commercialization of education not only gives it a tainted image, but also promotes divisive policies. A person coming from a rich background obviously has a much better chance to do well in life than one from a poor background. Also, since profit is the main motive, these education conglomerates only cater to the richer urban demographic, vastly neglecting the rural folk.
Further problems with this system include hedging, where a corrupt politician or businessman opens up a school to hedge the risks of his other ventures. Although on paper, such schools promote good “moral values” among their students, the truth about the founder only sets a bad example for the students that are studying in that particular school. Hence, excessive commercialization of educational institutions would lead to a generation of people with very gray morality.
However, commercialization of education has some positive effects too. First of all, it allows for more money to flow into the sector. Government funding of public schools and colleges is abysmally low internationally and the standard of education isn’t very high to begin with. Commercialization makes sure that students reach their full potential.
Also, commercialization would lead to competition among the “bringers of education” which would lead to a simple market correction thus bringing down the price. This would slowly but steadily build towards companies trying to rope in as many customers (in this case students) as possible and hence off setting the disadvantage of not being inclusive of all the classes.
Hence, in essence, it can be said that while commercialization has its drawbacks, it does at times breathe life into the ailing education sector. In a utopian world, there would be a balance between public and private schools, with public schools not being too shoddy and private schools not being too expensive.
A few steps towards this goal would be increasing government funding of schools, adopting policies that ensure free and fair competition among parties that ply the trade of education and ensuring that the sector doesn’t get overly commercialized. At the same time, it should also be ensured that the sector isn’t monopolized by the government itself. We need a balance between socialism and capitalism, if you will.
What do you think of private schools and colleges? What, in your opinion, makes a difference when it comes to education? Do you have any tips on how to improve the education sector? Let me know in the comments section below. Thanks for reading. Also, do not forget to follow me on Twitter if you haven’t already. For any queries or collaboration, you can always contact me.