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Pitfalls of private education

Most of these observations are based on my own past experiences and interactions with parents, stakeholders and students as an academician from higher education.

Statesman News Service |

Recent statistics suggest that the number of students going abroad for higher education has been continuously on the rise. Given the dwindling foreign reserves, it is a matter of concern to those in seats of power in the higher education sector as to how one can arrest this large-scale exodus of students to India and other countries, and curb the capital flight that is both precious and avoidable by offering quality programmes locally. Despite an increase in the number of private players in higher education, including those whose programmes have affiliation with a foreign university, the allurement and charm of going abroad continues to rise steadily. It’s worthwhile to recapitulate and ponder some of the issues plaguing Nepal’s current private education system.

Most of these observations are based on my own past experiences and interactions with parents, stakeholders and students as an academician from higher education. It is a matter of concern to note that private higher education in Nepal is functioning more along commercial lines than as a service. Higher education in our context is largely based on imparting content to the learners than honing their skills, thereby lowering the value of education among the current generation. They equate knowledge obtained in class as a substitute to resources available online. This has also degraded the value and respect of those imparting education. Most of the time, students do not see any connection between values, morals, the education they receive and its implications in their lives.

They are hardly able to reflect on and connect with classroom learning and events in their real lives. As a result, they seem to be getting dissatisfied with the content, approach and pedagogy, and towards life in general, as the knowledge they receive does not always lead them to secure jobs. Learners of today who represent the millennials believe that knowledge consumption can happen equally or even more effectively on social media platforms. They believe that the traditional method of teaching cannot keep pace with the advancements in technology and the methods of consuming knowledge that is available in different digitised formats. It is a well-known fact that private players in higher education are struggling to meet the maximum number of admissions possible or fulfil the sanctioned intake. This has resulted in some of them compromising on the ideal parameters to attract qualitatively superior students.