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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Kolaiveri in Schools

Ninth standard school boy stabs his Hindi teacher to death yesterday at Chennai since he was upset with her constant complaints to his father that he was under performing and further he was worried that he might not be promoted to the next class. The news was shocking for this is quite strange that aggression due to anxiety and stress among school going children has resulted in such an extreme step taken by the Chennai boy. This raises question about the educational system being followed by schools that pressurize their students to over perform so that the school achieves great results in board exams thereby enhance their brand image in this blooming educational commercial venture without giving any thoughts about the children. The school going children are being burdened both mentally and physically these days… you can see each morning teenage children who are in middle school lugging heavy school bags filled with all the books weighing over 15 kgs on their frail shoulders and it could lead to damaging the shoulders.

I do not recollect of any such issues faced by me during my school days nearly 4 decades back and going to school was so much fun and frolic. In addition to studies we had all the time in the world to play and have fun also each day. I hardly see such enthusiasm among the present day school going children.  But then there has been a sea of change in the society from those days and the intense competitions / comparisons by the peers at school and the parents have curbed the interests of the child. 

The teachers for sure would say that whatever they are doing is for the good of the child but then they also need to be a bit humane in their approach since the strict behavior and overloading could lead to extreme stress and anxiety among the children.  Critics may say that students have no tensions or stress but I beg to differ on this account as I deal with these issues with my two school going daughters who face similar issues in their school. The dampening factor in all these are the parents who needs to motivates the child without being over bearing or burdening them. Parents who are not emotionally available for their children or lack of coping mechanisms spur the child to become stressed. Such children tend to respond to the stress with indignation and aggression which would have lasting impact in their lives and sometimes lead to depressions and under performances

Following needs to be done by Parents to avoid their offspring becoming stressed

Talk with your child. Find out what`s happening in his life. Be honest and open with him. He should talk about his problems or write them down. Teach him to transfer coping strategies to other situations.
Do not burden them with your problems or your aspirations of them. But tell your children of the family goals and discuss the difficulties in a friendly manner.
Compliment children when they do well, and don`t forget hugs and kisses.
Use humour to buffer bad feelings and situations. A child who learns to use humour himself will be better able to keep things in perspective.
Don`t overload your child with too many after-school activities and responsibilities. Let children learn to pace themselves. Don`t enrol them in every class that comes along, and don`t expect them to be first in everything.
 Set a good example. Demonstrate self-control and coping skills. He/she can benefit by seeing how you cope successfully with stress.
 Get friends` or professional help when you think that the problems seem beyond your skills.

Aftermath of the incidence has given to lots of discussion about the very thing I have mentioned above and I hope that in years to come there is a definite change in the pattern of schooling which would bring joy and happiness among children once again.

Image Courtesy : Google Images