Parents forced to take to corrupt practices

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To get their children enrolled in reputed schools parents often lower their age to qualify to sit for admission tests.
To suit their plans, parents collect birth certificates of their children once again showing them to be of lower age.
There are instances of class four students sitting for admission into class two in reputed schools.
In such cases parents approach kindergarten schools to provide transfer certificates lowering their kids’ age.
The whole exercise, more often, involves corruption with money changing hands.
The root cause for all this is acute shortage of good schools in the capital and the rest of the country.
In the capital around five boys’ high schools and seven girls’ high schools face huge rush of admission seekers.
In the district towns, zilla schools face similar rush.
Not all the 358 high schools run by the government across the country draw admission seekers.
Parents also try to avoid getting their children admitted into most of the 20,000 non-government high schools across the country.
The desire for sending children to good schools leads parents to make their kids agree to appear in admission tests for lower classes time and again.
This involves loss of academic years for the young learners who also have to study textbooks of two classes simultaneously.
For this faulty education system was squarely blamed by professor emeritus Serajul Islam Choudhury.
Such distortions and forgery of parents, he said, was bound to leave a negative impact on the children’s mindset.
Gone are the times when many good schools were established under private initiative, said professor Serajul Islam.
And the government takes no interest to improve the existing schools or establish new ones, he said
In the prevailing situation, he said, parents were left with no option but to run after a handful of good schools.
Dhaka University psychology professor Shamim Karim said children aged six and above quickly learn cheating from what they saw their parents doing to enroll them into good schools.
As the school enrollment season is approaching, many parents became active to collect birth certificates for their children for the second, third or even fourth time re-recording their lower age.
Active brokers are distributing handbills in front of schools requesting parents
to contact them over mobile phones for their children’s birth certificates.
Parent Munim Sarwar told New Age that he purchased a birth certificate that shows his child to younger by a year.
He said that it was not at all difficult to obtain a transfer from a kindergarten school for his kid though he never attended it.
Nine -year-old Nuzaira said that she was under pressure from her mother to prepare for her annual exam and admission test simultaneously.
She said now she is left with no time to play or watch TV.
Under the existing system anyone can collect more than one birth certificate for themselves and dependents admitted deputy registrar general for registration of births and deaths Md Rashidul Hassan.
Under planned biometric registration of births and deaths, he said, it would not be possible.
Parents in the capital and divisional cities sometimes take recourse to unethical practices to get their kids enrolled in good schools, admitted education minister Nurul Islam.
‘We have plans to establish good schools,’ he said.

Source: New Age

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