The British University In Egypt
It is very obvious that the problem of education in Egypt in the last few years began to grow and to be recognized by all parts of society. Education can be defined as a piece of information or a skill that goes from a teacher to a student. Many people in Egypt indirectly suffer from that problem because they find that the schools are not efficient enough to teach the pupils so they go and register their children in private lessons to insure that they get a higher grade. And that is the main problem in education, subjects are full of worthless information that the child must memorize and not understand just to go to the exam and put the information as he memorized it. And that is a disaster because the child will grow on the concept of memorizing not understanding the idea and try to find solutions for the problem.
School education in Egypt consist of three main sections, first there is the primary stage and it is divided to six years, then the preparatory level and it is divided to three years and the final section is the secondary level and it is a three years level. Secondary level considered the most important part in the pupil's life in school, because after school he/she will go to the college and it is a very different stage from school. So he/she must be educationally well prepared to enter that new step. It is unknown when the problem really started but according to M. June Allard and Pamela R. McKay in their research about education in Egypt "that in 1990 when Egypt started to face a serious population explosion. In 1985 there were only one hundred and fifty five thousand teachers that served approximately ten million students" (Allard, & McKay, 2010) that means that every one teacher had sixty four students to serve. That statistical review was before what it is called population explosion. Also there is the problem of overcrowded classes in some schools. That occurs because of anyone who build a school does not think about the number of students that attend in every class he only worries about the income that the school must get so he begins to accept any student to increase the school's income. That is how the overcrowded schools are constructed. The essay is going to discuss some of the causes that made this problem rise like: memorized subjects, the overcrowded schools and lack of technology and libraries, and also mentions what the problem affected like: graduating uneducated students and the drop of economic state, and discuss solutions such as building more efficient schools, provide latest teaching method for teachers and changing the idea of the subjects.
The main cause for the failure of the educational system in Egypt is the subjects that are taught in schools that have been constructed by the ministry of education. Subjects are full of unnecessary and sometimes misleading information like in secondary school it is mentioned that the Arab invited the Arabic numerals and that is not correct because it is known as Paul J. Gans says "the Hindus in India invented these numerals in 600 AD" (J. Gans, 2007). And that is only one mistake from many other mistakes anyone could find easily in any student handbook. Many of the parents and guardians complained about these misleading information and request from the ministry of education to correct them or delete them, but the minister till now did not take any positive action toward these errors. The way that the subject is taught is totally wrong. The student must memorize these subjects word by word and most of the teachers tell them to do so because if they did not, the exam reviser will give them low grades, and that is what exactly happens.
In the last ten years, population explosion started to be recognized by Egyptians officials and they started to work some solutions for it but most of it did not work. Also making the government schools free of charge for everyone have led to the problem of overcrowded schools. According to what is mentioned in the book "Education in Egypt" by Judith Cochran that " the number of students in private school declined as the government made government schools free of charge so it attract children from everywhere to these type of schools and the overcrowded conditions started to increase" (Cochran, 1986, 45).
Lack of technology, adequate laboratories and libraries is also one of the major defects in many schools in Egypt. Unfortunately, most of the schools in 2010 still do not have any kind of technological development. In worldwide, many countries found a person illiterate if he/she does not know at least one programming language. The libraries hardly have useful books to use and the laboratories do not have any proper physical equipment or any chemical compounds that the students can even see to know and visualize what he is taught. That problem occurs because of the absence of an appropriate governmental financing to many schools in many regions in Egypt.
The most harmful effect that occurs because of the problem is finally the school will graduate uneducated students that neither they can go through college nor find an appropriate job. That will drag Egypt to a lower scientific stage than many countries. Also if the students did their best and try to go to collages they will face many barriers such as the way of teaching and learning is very different from the memorizing method taught in school. Also the teachers, whether they have experience or not, they do not motivate or complement the student as he need to be encouraged the most in his age, so he/she finally finds himself worthless within his community. This all will eventually affect the Egyptian economic in a harmful way. As National Institute of Health Publication reveals in its research about the depression that "It damages our self-esteem, self-confidence, and our ability to accomplish everyday tasks" it also asserts that" the depressed people find it so hard to finish their daily simple tasks, they can easily feel tired and they lose motivation and interest to do any activity they used to enjoy" ("What is depression?," 2010). So having a depressed student or child will cause many disadvantages that affect the society.
Economic drop will be an obvious effect when the education in Egypt fails because the school is main stage on the child's life. After the child puts through hard time and non secure life in school he will turn to be an ineffective person in the society that will turn him to depend on other people, or the country that will try to feed and support him. So finally the country will have a huge economic drop because of the massive number of the unemployed that the government is trying to support them without getting anything in return. As explained in a report about unemployment "that it has a major interference with the economic drop, as well as it helps crime, homicide and suicide rates to increase" ("Unemployment - consequences," 2002).
The government must build more schools in order to solve and overcome the problem of overcrowded classrooms and try to put more investment to fulfill the schools need for technology and libraries to make it more efficient. That will make the student feel more comfortable in the class, create a calm environment around him to help him learn. Being taught by latest technological means will also improve and help him to know what the new world has become. It has been known that putting technology in schools will benefit the students in many ways such as facing the real life problems and it will also drive him to a higher level of thinking. Also the schools must have decent libraries and at least make a library class every week make the students read and learn about self-education like what they will face in the universities and colleges. As mentioned in a research conducted by Margaret Honey that "In studies of large-scale statewide technology implementations, these efforts have been correlated with increases in studentsââ‚¬â„¢ performance on standardized tests" (Honey, 2001).
The teachers must be well trained by the latest ways of teaching and know how to face and handle any kind of trouble with the students. And the government must have serious exams and tests for these teachers because not anyone is able to teach and stand students in different ages. As Kevin Taglang reported in his research that "students whose teachers have completed 10 hours or more of training perform better than those whose teachers received five hours of training or less" (Taglang, 2000).
Changing the way of teaching and the subject is the most important steps that must be taken to improve the educational style and the way of thinking of the students. And that is what Egyptian ministry of education has been doing in the last five years. They are trying to change the idea of the subjects and the subjects themselves to make it fit in to the mind of the student whatever old he is. But unfortunately the ministry of educations is still changing the subjects but without any great result yet to come. To adjust the subjects the Egyptian education ministry must check for information that is in a book to avoid the errors. And to improve the subjects also they have to make it suitable for the students' mental abilities, in other words, every level have the information that can fit its students mind according to his/her age. This is a very important solution because this will assure the parents that their children know how to solve and think appropriately about any problem they face in the exams and also this will help them to keep the information in their head easily because the information fits his/her age mental ability. So this solution must be taken in consideration as soon as possible and the Egyptian ministry of education must act fast to avoid losing these children lives because with no appropriate teaching or learning these children will eventually be Beggar roaming in the streets.
In conclusion, the education problem in Egypt has become one of the most important issues that must be solved in the modern world. For many years the ministry of education in Egypt has dedicate its effort to solve the problem but with no observed results to declare that the solutions are effective. The ministry of education followed other learning and teaching methods from other countries but most of these methods failed because the students neither have the same environment nor the same culture to give the same results as the students in these other countries gave. So the government must take serious, fast and the right decisions to eliminate the problem as fast as possible because the children are the hope of a pleasant future for this country.
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