The Failure of Education in Nepal

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Tara Prasad Bhusal
Lecturer of Economics
Patan Multiple Campus,
Tribhuvan University ,Nepal

Although, we have experienced more than three decades of New Education System, education in Nepal has failed. We are not adequately preparing our students for professional and technical positions and are thus losing the technology race. We are not inspiring our students to think critically: to read, to study. Thus we are losing the intellectual fight as well. Ultimately, the problem is that education is viewed in Nepal as a degraded activity, completely alienated from more rewarding, productive activities and from more enjoyable, leisure pursuits. Thus education is neither rewarding nor stimulating, for the student or the teacher. It is, in fact, a necessary evil—drudgery, like housework. The problem is not simply a matter of systems integration or role conflict. The problem is inherent in the nature of modern capitalism, which demands and rewards productive labor while relegating reproductive and leisure activities to the individual's "free" time. As industry becomes increasingly alienated from family, family members experience the alienation of productive and reproductive labor, on the one hand, and labor and leisure, on the other. As education becomes increasingly alienated from family; the child experiences school as alienation from leisure, in childhood, and from labor, in adulthood. In the process, education becomes degraded. Once the individual has completed school, education (in fact, learning and thinking) have become totally divorced from productive labor and degraded as unrewarding and un-stimulating. Thus educated adults do not want to become teachers and adults, more generally, do not want to read, write, or think. Thus intellectual activity is abandoned and degraded. Thus we can not or will not read or think. The failure ofNepalese education is rooted in the development of open and free economy and reproduced in the socialization of our children. Thus we can trace the roots of the education crisis, historically, in the destruction of household crafts and subsistence farming, and in the experience of child rearing and education in contemporary society. Household craft production and subsistence farming characterized the Nepalese economy in the early nineteenth century. The family was the basic unit of production and reproduction. There was a gender and age based division of labor, but the process of producing and consuming the necessities of life and preparing the children to assume the responsibilities of adulthood was experienced collectively as a unified whole—the essence of family life. The distinction between productive and reproductive labor and the distinction between working and learning were difficult to maintain. The family produced essentially all that it needed, while teaching children the practical skills required in the domestic economy. Even the distinction between labor and leisure was difficult to sustain, since both were family activities. The development of commercial commodity production involved reorienting family production and reproduction (or subsistence) to the market for goods and services. The development of rational, labor saving devices and forms of collective enterprise involved, above all, the attempt to distill pure productive labor power (stripped from its human context in which it is indistinguishable from reproductive and leisure activities). As the market value of productive labor and its products becomes the basis for calculating the value of distinctive economic activities, productive, paid labor becomes increasingly important. At the same time, unpaid, reproductive labor and leisure activities become degraded as "women's work" or "child's play" that should not interfere with "more important" work—the paid employment of men. As productive enterprise became increasingly complex, in the efforts to "rationalize" production, the...
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