The All Goa Unaided School Parents Association (AGUSPA) stated in a press note that the demand of parents-teacher associations (PTA) of various schools in the state to change the policy of the medium of instruction must be considered seriously. AGUSPA president Nisser Dias said the demand of parents to get their children educated in English from the primary level is increasing in a bid to meet the challenges of globalization.
The AGUSPA was of the opinion that if the government intends to promote the state’s mother tongue, it should put in the right efforts. Merely forcing it down the throat of parents and children will have disastrous consequences as seen in the present day, read the press note. It pointed out that before the policy was enforced, there were only four English medium schools, and that the number shot up to 158 following its implementation.
The AGUSPA further stated that it is the parents who should decide what is good for their children and that the government cannot impose its view. It also questioned why the medium of instruction should be linked to financial aid.
Throwing light on the exploitation of parents by “so-called educationists”, the association stated that parents who want their children educated in English right from the primary level, in a bid to avoid conforming to the policy are left at the mercy of those who regard education as a lucrative business. “This lopsided policy has helped these businessmen to exploit parents and make huge profits,” it stated.
Orlando Pacheco, executive member of the AGSUPA questioned the absence of Konkani or Marathi medium unaided schools which could offer quality education on a par with that offered by English medium unaided private schools.
“It is loud and clear that parents’ demands to instruct their children in English from the primary level has led to the mushrooming of private English medium schools in every nook and corner of the state. Why is this government not accepting this fact?” he questioned. Pacheco insisted that aided schools be free to decide on the medium of instruction depending on parental demands, and that the government should not link medium of instruction to aid.