GRE Issue Essay 78
“A nation should require all its students to study the same national curriculum until they enter college rather than allow schools in different parts of the nation to determine which academic courses to offer.”
The children of a nation are its future. Along with becoming independent and successful, they are the ones to carry the responsibility of running the nation as well as developing it in the future. Therefore, it is very important to form a strong base in their formative years so that they are not only successful in the personal front but also turn out to be good citizens. Education plays an important role in forming the basis of a child’s future. The curriculum should therefore be carefully chosen to fulfill these requirements. I believe that the curriculum being followed in a nation should be similar but schools should have some freedom to introduce or change it to a certain extent. While the larger part of the curriculum should be decided to remain similar on a national level, it should not be binding schools completely to follow it strictly.
Having a uniform curriculum is beneficial in many ways. It determines a standard level which is required by every student to clear before he is able to take another academic step. Each level prepares the student for the next level and this forms a stepwise format of learning. A common curriculum ensures a stable and universal learning pattern. It allows making the curriculum familiar throughout the nation and it becomes easier to refer to it. There are many students who attend more than one school during their education. A common national curriculum is very important for such students who leave one school and join another at a different place. For example, consider the people in a transferable job like the defense. The children of a defense person have to go to different places along with their families. It is evident that they need to change their schools as often as their guardians get transferred to a new place. If there are no guidelines for curriculum given to schools, these children will have to face new and unfamiliar curriculums everywhere they go. This will make it difficult for them to cope up with the requirements of a new curriculum and they will be at a great disadvantage. According to me, a uniform curriculum at all places makes it easier for such people to change schools and adjust in a new environment without hampering their growth.
Today is the age of competition. In order to find a place anywhere the students need to compete with each other. Therefore, uniformity is required at some level so that there is fair competition. Generally, students have to face an entrance test at the college level to secure a seat. This entrance test is based on the knowledge acquired by students in their high schools. If there is variation in the curriculum that they have studied, the entrance test will not be made on similar lines for everyone. Hence, it would benefit some students who have studied that curriculum and the other students would be at a loss. There would be no way to judge their capabilities with the same parameters. Hence, it is very important that uniformity be maintained in the curriculum at the school level, and students be able to face fair competition when they leave school.
However, I maintain that along with following the national guidelines for curriculum, schools should have certain liberty in choosing the format of courses it offers. Each student is different and so are his abilities. While there are some students who are fast learners, some are average and some are extremely slow. Moreover, the interests of students vary. Keeping in mind the interests of students, the curriculum should be molded so that they retain their interest in studies altogether. Hence, schools should be allowed a certain amount of discretion in making certain changes according to the needs only for the betterment of all the students.
In the end I would I like to conclude that a uniform pattern on the whole is very important at a national level. However, at the same time, schools should not be bound to follow it blindly and should be able to make certain changes that help the students in their studies.