I have always wanted to become the Principal of my school, and if I do, the first thing I shall take care of is permitting students to come to school in casuals- no school uniform because uniform changes a student to a mere roll number, with no identity of his own.
Moreover, variety, which is the spice of life, is also taken away from students, when they wear school uniform. I have always felt that the school uniform helps teachers and the Principal to boss over the students. If students come in casuals, different colours of their dresses would brighten up the school environment and make the school more interesting.
I feel that the school uniform makes the school dull and boring. You cannot differentiate between Ram and Ashok, thus I would abolish school uniform completely.
The second thing would be to ensure that no teacher scolds the student.
All teachers would be asked to always be polite and kind to students. No teacher would give homework because this is the most common reason for students being scolded in school and at home to be ragged by parents, by insisting that they complete their homework before playing, watch the TV or go out with friends.
In school, it is the teachers, who are after you, thus, life without homework would become comfortable for students as well as teachers because then they wouldn’t be scolded and teachers, too, would have less of checking work to do.
I am also against giving examination/tests to children. If I were the Principal, I would ban all the examinations/tests. I would tell the teachers to teach in such a way that children remember all they are taught in the class.
The teacher, in the same period, would ask questions and ensure how much the child has learnt, but no work, no learning at home. I would introduce one games period everyday and one picnic a month and that too during school timing.
As the Principal of the school, I would declare every Saturday a holiday. I would also have two breaks in my school each of at least 30 minutes duration.
Summer break would be of two months, winter and autumn of fifteen days each. I think eight months of studies is more than enough for a child.
I would also ensure that parents are not called to school by teachers for any mischief done by the child. Why should parents be humiliated because of what their child has done? Not only this, a teacher is the parent of the child in school and should know how to improve the child.
Do the parents ever call teachers at home if their child misbehaves? If the teacher can call a parent to school then the parents should also be allowed to call a teacher home, if their child misbehaves.
I would also permit students to carry mobile phones to school as they have become a part of our lives now. They keep us connected with friends and parents. Parent’s anxiety is also lessened because of these little wonders. One day in a month would be a ‘movie day’ and one day would be kept only for playing matches. I would also permit class parties on birthdays of the students.
Another reform would be ‘No text books’ to be carried home. All text books and exercise books would be kept in the school locker and children would be asked to come to school empty handed.
But, discipline is also a part of school life, so, if needed, I would also give punishment but in a different way, such as a child, who comes late or is not attentive in class, would have to carry his books home with him and take a written test from the topics decided upon by his teachers. He would also have to do some homework and bring it to school the next day.
Now, that does not mean that school would be only enjoyment and no studies. I would make technology a part of school life to make school more interesting. It would be compulsory for students to carry laptops to school.
All class rooms would have LCD’s fitted and teachers would teach with the help of presentations. One day in a week would be given to children for asking their teachers, as many questions as they can, on a particular topic and if a teacher is not able to answer a question asked by the child, he/she could be given a cash award, as decided upon by the class.
‘If wishes were horses beggars would ride,’ I have a long way to go before I can actually become a Principal but if I do I would change my school, completely. I am sure all would agree with me that school would become a joyful place and education a pleasure, rather than being boring and dull, only and only if I were the Principal of my school!!