Secondary Education is the most significant stage in the educational hierarchy as it prepares the students for higher education and the world of work. The policy at present is to make secondary education of good quality available, accessible and affordable to all young persons in the age group of 14-18.
These years of transition and adolescence are the most crucial years of the student life. Students’ physical structure undergoes a fast change during this period and there are various sort of emotional transformation and mood swings.
Secondary education must equip the students by sharpening their skills and talents to make this transition quite smooth. The girls have to experience more difficulties in this transition because of age-old beliefs, social bias, prejudice and taboos prescribed for females in the society. As there has been a sharp decline in female sex-ratio in most of the states of India in the recent decades, efforts should be made to develop a gender friendly curriculum.
The curriculum must be designed to nurture natural talents and capabilities of the students, viz. language, logical and analytical ability, physical fitness, sports, general awareness, nature and environment etc. These crucial years in student life must offer suitable opportunity for nurturing and honing their inherent skills.
About 70% of India lives in villages and gets educated in remote areas. Small remote areas pose
several challenges for students due to a lack of resources and limited learning opportunities. The
resource constraints impede the academic stimulation needed for the students’ cognitive,
intellectual, and social development.
Problems in Secondary Education
- Undue Importance on Examination: Students are forced into cut-throat competition with the aim of scoring very high marks.
- Teachers’ Status in Society: The teaching profession is not getting due respect and recognition in society because of which many brilliant and intelligent youth prefer to pursue other professions which give them high status and hefty salary.
- Lack of trained and dedicated teachers
- More Emphasis on English Language
- No emphasis on practical training
- Lack of facilities to improve personality
- Lack of Provision of a Proper Environment
- Lack of participation by all stakeholders in Education
- Absence of regular supervision of schools by the higher authorities
- Lack of adequate infrastructure
- Less emphasis on extracurricular activities
- Lack of career guidance
- Lack of Sports Facilities and Motivation
- Parents’ indifference and lack of supervision: Most of the parents do not give children proper time and attention to attend to their emotional, moral and educational needs. As a result of this neglect, the children sometimes get addicted to bad company and are distracted from study. Some of them fall an easy prey to obscenity and vulgarity and violence being shown on internet and TV, fail to perform well in studies and don’t fulfill the expectations of their parents.
- Peer-Pressure: Some students are influenced to the extent that they imbibe the bad habits of smoking, alcoholic drinks, drugs or other addictions and unhealthy practices. The kids give in to peer-pressure because they want to make a high image in the eyes of their friends. Sometimes they copy and follow their friends lest they might be rejected, neglected or scoffed at, if they don’t go along their peers.
- Lack of Balance between Academics and Values of Life
- Students’ indiscipline and lack of interest
- Lack of supervision and control by teachers
- Lack of qualified and committed teachers
- Partiality and Indifferent Attitude of Teachers: Many a time teachers are found to be showing partiality, thinking some student to be bright, disciplined and sincere. The teachers may naturally be partial to that student. On the other hand, the students consider teachers as their guru and have great reverence for them. When the students don’t get justice, they feel disappointed and from then onwards their love, regard and respect for the teacher vanish. The students who are ignored come to a conclusion that the teacher doesn’t like them. They become a victim of depression, disappointment and negativity which ultimately prove detrimental to their wholesome growth. Some students get frustrated and disappointed on account of teachers’ indifference and lack of interest towards them.
- Mental Health Problems
- Lack of education in gender equality
- Neglect of Nutrition and Health
- High Pupil-Teacher Ratio
- Lack of Education in Values
Government Schemes for Secondary Education
At present, the following schemes targeted at secondary stage (i.e. class IX to XII) are being implemented in the form of Centrally Sponsored Schemes:
- Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan
- Girls Hostel Scheme
- National Scheme of Incentives to Girls for Secondary Education
- Inclusive Education for Disabled at Secondary Stage
- Scheme of Vocational Education
- National Merit-cum-Means Scholarship Scheme
- Scheme for construction and running of Girls’ Hostel for students of secondary and higher secondary schools
- Scholarship schemes for Minority students
- National Scholarships