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- News Letter
We are living in a time of change; there is no doubt about it. In just few years, the world has been transformed substantially and rapidly. Just a few generations ago it took a whole life time to notice significant changes, and now it only takes a decade to notice that our life styles are substantially different. Our culture, belief system, behaviour, values ....all are on the way of change.
All these go without saying. In every area of life, new challenges appear; there is a paradigm shift in a way. We can enumerate a long list of politics, the economy, or society, and we would most certainly arrive at the same conclusion; the decline of the analog world and the appearance of a new digital world.
We are no longer condemned to simply receive information passively; today, we all have the chance to participate in all aspects of life as emitters. Does it make sense, then, for us to simply view students as empty vessels to be filled?
We as educators need to look for a new paradigm in learning and teaching process. Jesuit education always brought a new trend in the past. Can we make a new trend now? Can we the trend setters in our educational system by incorporating the creative ways and enabling us to face the new challenges?
Looking at India and South Asia, I feel that the need of the hour is to bring a new, humane way of education that ultimately helps all to be competent, conscience, compassionate and committed citizens for the nation and the world.
There is disharmony and division, there is hatred and communal strife, there is inequality and injustice, there is value degradation and wrong interpretation of freedom. There is ecological destruction and careless attitude towards future generations. Can we as educationists stand there and watch all the fun? Can we see education as the most important thing for human and social formation?
The reasons for our failure to renew our educational model are diverse and complex. Nevertheless, we can definitely say that the beliefs of many educational agents, the low esteem in which society holds schooling, or the use of educational system as an ideological battlefield on behalf of political parties and cultural forces are definitely no help.
What most distresing is that although the current model of education in India has been exhausted, the government lacks the will to change. It seems that it wants to conserve the current order with a bit more old fashioned changes!. They are not ready to risk navigating in uncharted waters. Here comes our duty to bring forth an alternative path in education for all.
Let us work on this....like the the models Jesuits brought out through Fe Y Alegria in Latin America or Cristo Rey Model in the States. I welcome all to think an alternative path in our educational arena, that suits the South Asian needs at preset. All the best!
Sunny Jacob SJ
JEA Secretary, South Asia