IMPARTING MORAL EDUCATION

An order was issued by the Department of School Education (DSE) in May 2018, whereby imparting moral education was made mandatory in all schools of the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, and this initiative was really a welcome measure especially in view of militancy having already taken a heavy toll here with some of the children and youth getting strayed away towards anti- social activities. The move of the department seemed to be the result of well-conducted deliberations and a meticulously formulated plan as was evident from the order taking due care of making the initiative meaningful. Unfortunately, although about three years have passed since the order and the erstwhile State has been bifurcated into two Union Territories, no activity of the kind seems to be visible on ground till date. As per that order all the government as well as privately run recognized schools were required to impart moral education in a 30-minute session daily, besides ensuring that the timing of the session be appropriately scheduled immediately after the morning prayers. In this regard, all the Chief Education Officers in their respective areas of jurisdiction had been directed to constitute flying squads to randomly check the implementation of the order in letter and spirit. Though any such activity by any squad till date is unheard of, it seems that the order has been probably shelved by concerned authorities for the reasons best known to them. It is a fact that the vision of the state lies in the hands of school children as they are filled with towering ambitions all set to step into the next stage of life to become the future citizenry and contribute towards nation-building. It will be a great wastage of this future human resource if there is even the slightest shortcoming in providing the school-going children proper guidance and direction in leading the nation towards achieving the highest place in the world order. However, in view of the reported instances, though rare, about some teenagers indulging in anti-social and antinational activities like committing crimes or even joining the militant ranks, there is a dire need to push ahead this initiative with full vigour. It needs to be realized that if there is a flaw in educating the children in the schools as well as at homes, the society has to pay a heavy price later. There is a dire need to address this issue at the earliest as it does not only ruin the children’s future but poses serious threat to the nation’s integrity and security. To address this vital issue it seems that today there is a dire need to focus on value -based education, of which moral education is the most significant component. Though the primary role of young people is to receive good education in order to become better citizens of tomorrow, yet the process of moulding is a complex one, involving multiple factors including cultural diversity and economic disparities. The way we nurture our children into confident, capable and committed citizens will determine the future of our Union Territory and the nation. The key to prepare them for nation building is to prioritize their moral education besides the routine sharpening of their mental faculties, technical skills, professional competence, and awareness about their social responsibilities. It is hoped that Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha takes serious note of this significant issue and initiates appropriate measures to implement the forgotten order in letter and spirit.