Compare different modes applicable to the universities
Compare different modes applicable to the universities. Which model do you think is most appropriate for Pakistan and why?
Education is the soul of an individual and a nation; it is the beacon that allows the nations to find the way to the future. Philosophy of education deals with the problems of our education system through a multi-disciplinary approach concerned with its concepts, aims, methods, and results.
Our Education System is a legacy of our colonial masters. We have failed to update it with respect to the changing times. What education we are giving to our own children today, is an antithesis of Plato’s Education Philosophy of Idealism described in his vision of an ideal Republic; which advocates about an individual who is subservient to a just society. Should the child be raised by the state as advocated by Plato(away from parents)? This question has been answered differently by Utopian scholars, ideologies, and civilizations. Irrespective of the way the child is brought up in various civilizations, the aim of education is to create social change; produce citizens for the civil society, and provide opportunities to all social classes for the growth of individuals and communities. Pakistan is a Republic but the aim of education is not clear. Ironically, developing a national aim of education is not the agenda of our lawmakers; not even the reform-oriented political parties have declared any concrete policy on education. The surveys of schools conducted in rural Sind and Punjab in the 1990s revealed that 60 percent of our schools in our rural areas are not functioning. The number of people who can write their names is only 52 percent in Pakistan, the unofficial literacy level is much lower. If we have a national debate on the question does nature or nurture is responsible for our underdevelopment? the majority will favor the concept of Fatalism(a philosophical doctrine emphasizing the subjugation of all events or actions to fate). Under these circumstances, we cannot discuss the Philosophy of Kant or Hegel in Pakistan. It is no surprise that Pakistan became the breeding ground of fanatic religious ideologies supported by brotherly countries since 1979.
Islam is one of the majestic religions of the world which emphasized on its followers to get educated; Islam declared knowledge as light and its absence as darkness. The Holy Book Al-Quran is a living miracle of our beloved Prophet Rehmat-ul-Alameen Muhammad(Peace be Upon him). Quran is a treasure of knowledge and guidance for the people till the day of judgment. It completed the religion of Allah initially delivered piecemeal by the Prophets in different times and places. Our Holy Prophet (PBUH) created a welfare state/civil society in Madina for 12 years. Sociologists believe that women’s rights are the key to the civilization of change and progress. He(PBUH) gave the rights of emancipation (the right to marry, get an education, adopt a career, get inheritance and choose divorce at will) to women in the 7th century, which were given to European women after the 1850s. The international scholars acclaim him as the greatest leader of mankind who brought an unimaginable social change in the world’s most uneducated and uncivilized society of the world-Arabia in the 7th century. The Muslims emerged as a world power from the 7th to the 17th Century A.D. However, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is ranked just above the Least Developed Countries(LDCs) in the Human Development Index of the world. It is ironic that Islam provided all the recipes of national development, nevertheless, we are moving on the way of darkness; we are infected with all the social evils for which different communities were punished by Allah for disobedience as narrated in the Quran. I have yet to see any demonstration by religious parties in Pakistan on our illiteracy or lack of intellectualism. Our Holy Prophet(PBUH), his Ahl-e-Bait, and his sincere companions gave us the gift of knowledge to change, why are we following the path of darkness? If utilitarianism can be achieved by other civilizations of the world, then why not the people of Pakistan get a scholastic solution to their problems.
I listened to different TV anchors who in their talk shows emphasize the formation of National Policies on Economics, Defense, Foreign Policy, etc. No doubt they are important but education is the key to development. According to UNDP, investment in education provides a long-term profit of @16 percent. Low literacy rates are one of the reasons for poor economic growth in India despite having democracy for 65 years. Contrary, huge investment in human development and technical education by autocratic China produced one of the strongest sustainable growth in human history. The economic growth of brother Islamic Republics/countries of Iran, Turkey, Egypt, Malaysia, and Indonesia is correlated with their accomplishments in education. Why are we afraid of the knowledge and development of our people? Literate and educated Pakistan has a higher probability to defeat the non-democratic forces than the existing web of poverty, deprivation, and darkness. John Dewey(1859-1952) believed in the strong relationship of education with democracy. Dewey was an important early developer of the philosophy of Pragmatism(philosophical tradition centered on the linking of practice and theory) and one of the founders of Functional Psychology(general psychological philosophy that considers mental life and behavior in terms of active adaptation to the person’s environment). He was a major representative of progressive education and liberalism.
From the perceptive of parents, education should augment their family income and social standing in society. The structure of our education provides 14 years of education to a child with no guarantee of employment. As Pakistan is passing through its worst economic growth under a democratic government, our education should focus on technical education and entrepreneurship training for our students. The lack of economic independence of our male graduates reduces matrimony, sustainable marriages, and other social evils in our society. Informal education with NGO’s support is possible.
The weak relationship of Primary/Secondary education with Higher education reduces its linkage with national economic growth as experienced in Sri Lanka. Higher education got a fillip in Pakistan from 2000 to 2007, under military rule. Higher Education Commission created by Mr. Atta-ur-Rehamn and his team gave us hope that Pakistan has a futuristic vision; the weaknesses in the national economic and human development had a ray of hope that the young generation is moving in the right direction. The students were selected on merit for foreign scholarships in the technologies of the future. The local universities were expanding and improving to accommodate the young scholars returning back from their studies. But the discontinuation of these great initiatives by the People’s Government in the last 5 years has increased the fears of failures of the state. It has amplified despair in society.