The tuition culture
The scenario is completely reversed from the past when availing tuitions meant that
you were a weak or bad student. Tuitions today are a significant need of every
student. Thus you see small groups of students gathered at teachers' homes or
well-furnished coaching centres just about everywhere. The fees too varies
according to vicinities, further adding to parents' burdens. However, if one
would like to evaluate the causes of this scenario, there may be plenty of
March, 2008: Tuition centres have a high prominence in present Pakistani society. Every next
student, whether gifted or average, rich or poor, is taking tuitions, which has
made this culture take root in the present educational system.|
The biggest cause of the increasing demand for tuitions is the
large munber of pupils in school classrooms. Each class is full of varied
talents with areas in need of improvement. The ratio of teacher to student is
usually 1:50 and they have short periods (around 30-45 minutes) to teach, which
makes it difficult for the teachers to pay individual attention especially to
the class's average or slow learners. A teacher may find it difficult to
identify each student's need in order to help him cope with his studies. That is
why a student is compelled to undertake tuitions in order to successfully
complete the examination requirement.
The present teachers' status in
society and lesser monitory benefits in the teaching profession also contribute
to an increased demand for tuitions. Many teachers who run private tuition
centres on the side see to it that their students attend those instead of
benefitting from what is taught in the classroom. It is the tuition centres
where they teach what was to be taught in the classroom with complete
determination and sincerity.
Another important thing leading to the
tuition culture is the present examination system in Pakistan. The students are
expected to develop knowledge-level understanding of their subject rather than
indulge in the self-investigation of different phenomenon which leads them into
the trap of rote learning and solving hundreds of old examination papers before
sitting for an exam.
Tuition centres encourage students to take
shortcuts. Rather than studying the respective subjects in depth, they provide
them with old examination papers to solve in a given time period and just like
that studying becomes the training of the mind to work mechanically rather than
The parents' education level or the time they can give
to their children also contributes to the demand for tuitions. Research has
proved that the parents' level of education has a high positive relation with
students' educational achievement (Hodgkinson, 2004).
Even today in
Pakistan many of the parents, especially mothers who are considered responsible
for the child's education, are illiterate. This enhances the need of arranging
tuitions for children in order to provide them with an opportunity to improve
their educational outcome. In addition, the concept of both working parents has
led to parents spending half or sometimes even a whole day outside the house.
This makes it difficult for them to pay due attention to their children. How
many working parents in this day and age find the time to sit and do homework
with their children in the evening? Tuitions are a solution for this problem as
These causes have made a huge impact on the social and educational
system of our society. The quality of classroom teaching has been affected.
Teachers are usually cognizant of the fact that 90 per cent of their students
take tuitions making them fulfill their responsibility in class half-heartedly.
The tutors are expected to pay special attention to the students instead. On the
other hand, students also pay less attention in the classroom as they feel that
their tutors will do the needful later. The level of respect for school teachers
in the eyes of the pupil has gone down considerably due to this fact.
self-directed learning capacity of students has been affected. Students have
become dependent on tuitions and tutors for understanding concepts rather than
making an effort on their own to investigate a subject and develop their own
understanding. There goes the inquisitive nature and analytical and reflective
thinking of the students. Where is the need for all that when you are getting
readymade material from the tuitions centres to study for an examination?
Children these days are spending most of their time in
studies. First they attend school and then they go for tuitions. Remember the
saying: "All work and no play"? This scenario causes a mental burden on students
and restricts them from giving their minds a break and indulging in fun
activities such as sports and other hobbies. Thus a child's social development
is also under threat.
The parent-child relationship is also affected.
Helping children with their studies at home is an important way for parents to
bond with them and aquaint themselves with the habits, studying style, areas in
need of improvement and strengths of their offspring (Marion, 2001). However,
tuitions reduce the opportunity for parents to know their child
The negative aspects outweigh the positive ones. This existing
situation lays an important responsibility on school authorities as well as
parents. School authorities need to ensure that teachers fulfill their
responsibility to the students. An effective monitoring mechanism needs to be
devised to ensure the quality of teaching in the classroom. The parents too
should try to pay more attention to their children as they are the first and
most important teachers in their children's lives.
By Bilqees I. Patel (Dawn)
The writer is a former teacher
"Please send me the rules about the private schools regarding fee structure that one they charge fees second they demand june and july fee in advance in the months of january and febuary third they demand extra money in the name of other charges."
Name: Dr Ziaul Islam
City, Country: Karachi, Pakistan
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|Updated: 14 Oct, 2014|