School first

From here you learn the value of values



When we are young the first lessons of character, honesty, moral ethos and cultural probity are given at home by our parents, primarily by our mothers. A mother is usually seen as the force that chisels or shapes the lives of children. Thus begins our education of character and morality. School plays a vital role in character building of an individual. Together these two institutions – the family and the school – in synchrony give rise to the finest individuals.
I remember when I was in school most of our teachers, irrespective of what they taught, would every now and then bring up some topic or story which imbibed cultural and moral values. This was their way to impart complete education to the students, and enabling us to differentiate between right and wrong in accordance to our religious and cultural framework. We need to understand that the morality or ethics are actually never changing aspects of the human logic and reasoning. For example, if killing someone was wrong in the past, it cannot be right at present or in future; or if stealing from someone was wrong, it cannot change. Similarly, if lying is wrong today, we can't go about lying tomorrow without having any remorse for our actions. Hence, moral values remain constant even with the advancement of the Human race.
Whether our schools are still delivering on character building and upholding moral and cultural values besides academics. It is evident from the growing incidence of immorality  among young people in Kashmir that our schools and families have somewhere failed to synchronize the two. This may be a result of mad race to excel in the academics, to stand upfront among the elite and neglect other equally important part of education. Not only the schools but the family system of education is responsible for this decline. 
It is very unfortunate to see an elite school encouraging a culture which is foreign to us, while ignoring the cultural sensibilities. This is tantamount to playing the cultural aggression card. We need to realize that it is within the boundaries of a school that the youth learn to regard and uphold their cultural, moral and religious values. The rational sense and decision making of an individual are based on what is fed to him during his or her school days. So he or she sees the right or wrong accordingly. And thus the boys and girls who are coerced to dance today in their schools, that too with free gender mix, will not see any wrong with it tomorrow. This is against our cultural, moral and religious values.

( Ikram Ullah is currently studying Biomedical Genetics at Vellore Institute of Technology. Feedback at

Lastupdate on : Tue, 6 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Tue, 6 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Wed, 7 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST

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