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Education of children: The buck stops with parents

This is a special season. Results are out for both Class X and XII. It is time for new academic session. Hard as winter comes rolling in, we prepare for a new beginning.

For some parents, though, this is a difficult time. When children do not succeed, financial burden that parents have to shoulder is immense. For the children who have done well, good things await them. Many will go for professional studies to reputed colleges and universities abroad and return and contribute to the nation-building process. For a country that provides free education to all, tapping the best talents has been at the core of human resource development.

But do our children and parents really understand this? Prosperity can be difficult to handle. From a nation that woke up with a jolt from a peaceful medieval dream, Bhutan today is rushing headlong towards economic development that is bringing in kinds and kinds of changes. The kind of leap that we had to make got us to some zone of comfort, yes, but we missed quite of bit of vital steps along the way. The speed of change has been dizzying.

That is perhaps why we are today struggling with issues like rising youth unemployment. This day it is not easy to find a job as it was a decade ago. We could blame policy failures, which are aplenty to talk about, but we must also face the reality. Free education comes with boon and bane both. How well have we been able to harness the goodness of it?

Teachers are doing the best they can in the school system. Even as we are losing worrying number of teachers every year, we are doing well because those who have chosen to stay back are giving their best. Is that good though? Burnout could happen eventually. Are we worried about that?

What are our parents doing in the meanwhile? Especially in urban centres, parents are losing their children to the very many attractions of the modern times. Parents of this day have no time for their children. Our children are feeding on unhealthy diets of dangerously abundant digital contents. What our children need is love and care, nothing more.

As a small nation with fledgling economy, competitiveness must be our focus. It is incumbent on parents to encourage such thoughts. How well our children do and rise to the challenges of modern Bhutan depends on hands and minds of parents. The buck stops with you.

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