Privatization of Educational Institutions

Air-conditioned classrooms in schools, huge pathways, multiple fields, expensive cafeterias, even gaming centres within some of the college premises, all being funded by the government? Not really. India has seen a rapid emergence of private institutions in the past decade. Nobody resisted this privatization at an elementary level with the private schools and without a second thought, all those parents who could afford it, sent their children to these private schools which definitely provided a better atmosphere, better faculty than the government schools. However, suddenly, after school ends, people realise how important it is to get through the government colleges, but due to the irrationally high cut-offs, the lack of availability of courses and seats, the students are now forced to get into the private colleges. Nobody is arguing about the fact that these private institutions in the case of higher education do not provide good faculty, rather the facilities provided by these institutions are impeccable, but at a very high rate. Which however, not all those who cannot get through the government institutions due to the visible issues, can afford to get into these private institutions.

Privatisation is a process, which can be defined as the “transfer of assets, management, functions or responsibilities [relating to education] previously owned or carried out by the State to private actors”.

It is ridiculous how in the context of India, on the one hand the schools under the State are in a terrible condition whereas it is literally an achievement to get through the government institutions when it comes to higher education. The imbalance present in the educational function of the State has led to the cropping up of such issues. Education, we must try to understand is not luxury, it is a must have for every human being irrespective of the societal status. Due to this privatization, we see the creeping in of business in educational spheres, whereas it is of utmost important to keep education free from the shackles of profit and loss but rather to be seen as a basic amenity that the government must provide for. Due to the paucity of resources both capital and human, the government is unable to provide for the lack of seats in these State Institutions. This is where the private institution comes in seeming to rescue the student, but rather sucking the capital out of the economy for business purposes, clearly showing how the capitalist aspect of the mixed economy is functioning in the wrong spheres with no resistance whatsoever. The deceptive benefits that these private institutions provide for are already paid for by the students. Education comes across as a give and take business from the monetary perspectives, students are investing money to earn money in their future, whereas ideally it should be a negligible amount that the student pays to educate themselves and build their future not leaning on a deceptive investment they’ve already made for themselves. Private education trusts often become merely profit making business ventures with no social ideals or objectives.

It is important to educate children to make them able citizens to uphold every spheres of their nation’s economy, education is not the space for business, business should be left outside the boundary of education. And to improve such a situation, the government needs to act right from the root level. Make the State’s education function efficient so that there is absolutely no need for the private institutions to crop up. I personally advocate that private institutions should steer clear out of the educational sphere, so that these very students can afford a luxurious lifestyle that can be provided by the functioning of the mixed economy at their capability and merit not by some deceptive modes of investment which does not really prove to be beneficial in the long run. And even if these institutions function, it should be at par with the educational quality provided by the government institutions and should remain an educational institution where knowledge is imparted. It should not be transformed into a business hub.

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