The best means to crush the spirit of an egalitarian democracy and make its citizens absolute conformists is to colonize the education system. The profit-driven bourgeois spearheading the privatization of education know very well how to commodify, commercialize and contort the very concept of education by transforming students into “consumers” and teachers into “service providers”.
Another way to stultify the education system would be that the public institutions raise their fees. Either way this economic yoke would not just make education the prerogative of the rich – filtering the impecunious – but will leave the students completely disarmed and socially insensitive to be the vanguards of socio-political emancipation. As Naom Chomsky observes;
“Students who acquire large debts putting themselves through school are unlikely to think about changing society. When you trap people in a system of debt, they can’t afford the time to think. Tuition fee increases are a “disciplinary technique,” and, by the time students graduate, they are not only loaded with debt, but have also internalized the “disciplinarian culture.” This makes them efficient components of the consumer economy.”
The configurations of our modern school and college classrooms are vestiges of industrial revolution that wanted to produce mass workers with little or no knowledge of the world around them. Most of the time what happens inside these walls is less of education and more of indoctrination. The pedagogy of polemics is scuttled for the propaganda of univocalism. Devoid of dissent, education becomes an apparatus for homogenization in the hands of hegemonic powers which do not tolerate differences of opinions.
The veracity of a credible education system is not the reiteration of the perspectives of a teacher by the students rather a feasible exploration of the alternate visions and perceptions of students who have mustered the audacity to dream anew. Students aren’t mere depositories neither are teachers mere depositors. In a proper education system the roles are frequently interchanged in the course of critical reflection and challenging deliberations.
Honouring all the teachers who dare to forgo the polarity between students and teachers to make better human beings.
Happy Teachers’ Day !
~ 𝐃𝐚𝐲𝐫𝐨𝐲𝐨 𝐅𝐫. 𝐁𝐚𝐬𝐢𝐥