LAHORE: Some of the greatest thinkers, scholars, philosophers, doctors, mathematicians and scientists in the history of mankind never attended a school during their childhood. Yet, they went on to gain immense knowledge and imparted it to others too.They were responsible for inventions, theories and contributions to society that not only left their mark in history, but also often changed the way human beings thought and worked together.However, in today’s era, education is no more confined only to schools, colleges and universities but has spread to tuition centres, coaching centres and academies. These coaching centres, tuition centres and academies are found in almost every street and corner of Lahore. A coaching centre or a tuition centre uses special teaching methods and attempts to prepare a student specifically for the exam he/she is planning to take.
An excess of these types of centres in city has led people to question the quality of education they are providing, both in public and private sectors. Currently, there is no official data regarding the number of tuition centres in Lahore.In some posh areas of the city, several tuition centres are also regular private schools in the mornings. Also, there are several smaller tuition centres in almost every residential area, which have been set up in houses and contain one or two rooms. These are usually set up by schoolteachers or students at bachelor and intermediate levels to earn some extra money.Students and parents believe that joining an academy or a tution centre is a must for good grades. They think it is necessary to get the children admitted in a renowned academy for good performance in studies. They also argue that such institutions provide extra help and practice through test sessions that help students in preparing for their exams.
Ahsan, a student of grade 10, told Daily Times, “These academies and tuition centres provide good study material, like mock test papers that a student cannot easily get hold of in schools or colleges and all these factors help a student prepare better for a competitive examination.”He said that the most crucial advantage of taking up coaching is that one gets to know the paper pattern, questions asked in the previous exams as well as their solutions, which chapter or question should be given more importance, etc. He added, “These centres provide study material that include a detailed syllabus, which is usually not covered in regular schools.”However, in some cases students merely join academies because of peer pressure or because of parents’.Separately, most of the teachers hold students responsible for joining these centres. A secondary school teacher, Nadia, said, “Students just do not feel satisfied with whatever they have studied in the school so, in the evening they go to a nearby coaching institute to study that extra bit they feel they have missed.” She added, “Some young people who have hardly completed matriculation have opened tuition centres in their homes and provide low quality coaching. They are wasting their own time as well as students’ time and money.”
Nadia said that scoring well should not be the only purpose of joining tution centres. Getting good grades mainly depends on the calibre of a student, she said, adding, “Students feel that joining academies guarantee good grades and would relieve them from self study.” Most of the parents, however, appreciate their children joining academies and tution centres.A mother, Kishwer, said that these institutes are also a place where children can socialise. “It enhances a child’s social abilities through exchange of notes and books.”She said these centres effectively prepare a student for exams by regularly holding mock tests. Also, the students are made to submit assignments that also aid them in their preparation. She said, “These institutes also serve as a platform where students can clarify their doubts and discuss them with other students as well. – Dailytimes