Tuesday, April 04, 2006


"Does Meena deserve this?" This was the thought that kept coming to me again and again as we tried to cram as much English grammar as possible in three hours last weekend. Her Class X Board Exams started last week and yesterday and today were her English papers. Inspite of all the efforts which she has been putting in for a while, I am scared that she may not make the grade.
Here are the things in her favour
1. Her own keeness to do well in her exams and her intelligence
2. Her network of employers and friends all of whom have tried to help her out in some way or other - buying her books, giving her time off from work, spending time teaching her etc.
But is this enough to overcome the fact that she has spent her entire life being educated in sub standard schools? And what some of us take for granted, vis. the ability to speak and read fluently in English, is a big struggle for her. She has spent hours memorising as many essays as possible in her English guide book without understanding most of it. These exams for her will be no test of knowledge but a test of memory.
Neither of us will know what will happen till her results come. I am not sure if failure is an option for her. As the only kid who is receivng an education in her family, she could easily slip into a path which life has chosen for her siblings - being a maidservant. Hopefully she will do better. She certainly deserves better.

1 comment:

Anitha said...

True. But, as a student in class 7, i was discouraged from writing in "my own words." Teachers preferred a direct vomit from the textbook.