This refers to the article “The long road to examination reforms” by Krishna Kumar (Nov. 21). Vanita is not just a victim of a ritual whipping system but of a ritual examination system. Annual or board examinations rather than shaping our lives decide our future and destiny. Instead of acting as a catalyst to bring about a constructive change, education has become a suppressor of potential talent, destroyer of a golden period of freedom and a tool in the hands of the “educational” businessmen.

Teaching has ceased to be a sacred duty thanks to the seasonal calendar, pressure from school managements, inadequate compensation, rank consumerism, and a creeping corporate culture.

Abdul Muqhtadir, Manvi

Students’ apprehension about examinations is well-known. But is it attributable to their fear of survival in their flock or fear of parents and teachers who expect them to “always” perform? Even persuasive teachers are unable to mould the children the way they want because they have to prove to the school management their capacity in the form of “centums.”

Parents too measure their children’s competency based on marks. There are many schools which conduct no formal examinations till Standard V and, notably, they produce a number of top-rankers, marks-wise, in Board examinations. It only proves these schools have managed to circumvent the pressure — parental and societal.

Pragnya SumaVadrevu, Coimbatore

The article must be commended for its incisive analysis of the ills that plague the present examination system. The present system needs a complete overhaul. Education is not all about examination. It is a continual process of lifting the veil of ignorance, of firing up creativity and innovation and of enriching young minds by appropriate training.

It is sad that many students commit suicide when examination results go awry. Let the learners learn at their own pace with the teacher remaining a facilitator and guide.

M. Jeyaram, Sholavandan

The article is an ominous cry of a stalwart, no less a person than the NCERT Director. All boards of education systematically drive the students to excel — but in a rat-race. Parents are no less to blame. Teacher education is the essence of any reform. With a small exception, all teachers adopt an examination-oriented approach. Abolition of the Standard X examination is not the solution. The gangrenous system needs amputation. Well-equipped classrooms with limited student-strength may bring about some meaningful change.

K.S. Ganapathy, Tiruchi

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