For all parents whose children are appearing for Boards, this is an open letter by Anita Karwal, Chairperson, CBSE. Something worth reading…please do give a read
I wonder if you have watched a very sensitively crafted TV commercial these days,
where a father is driving his young school going daughter in his car. The daughter is
visibly upset and is pulling herself apart in her mind, as she feels that her exams did not
go off very well, and she would therefore not rise up to the expectations of her father.
The father’s instincts are strong. He gauges what she is going through, and immediately
feels bad that he has not made his daughter strong enough to handle the difficulties that
may arise in her life suddenly and without a hint. What a powerful message!
It is true that commercials in India often revolve around powerful social messaging. But
that alone is not the point here. This example is actually very subtle and a true reflection
of changing mind-sets of parents in the 21st century. We sincerely hope that you as a
parent understand the need for changing with the times. School education no longer
revolves around academic disciplines as the area of focus; in fact, the focus now is on
developing a specific skill, that is, a love for learning. As parents, you contribute to your
child’s learning growth curve if you fan their curiosity from the time they are toddlers, and
encourage them to develop an enquiring mind and be creative as they grow older. This
then lays the foundation for developing an innovative nature and entrepreneurship, two
of the most crucial 21st century skills for the children of a nation such as ours.
To lead them into become innovators and entrepreneurs, you must recognize the unique
potential of your own child, rather than compare with others. Your friend’s child may be
good at mathematics and want to become an engineer, but your child may be good at
theatre and may want to become a film-maker. The number of possible careers is
unlimited, hence the limitations of our minds as parents, must not become the limitations
for our children in achieving great heights.
I urge you not to achieve your own aspirations vicariously through your child. I also
earnestly request you to empower your child to face life head-on. Like the parent
realises in the commercial mentioned above, when we adults face so many ups and
downs all through life, why should we expect our children to always be on the upward
swing! Therefore, ensure that your child develops that confidence in your rock-solid
support, if ever she needs to cope with adverse situations without being disheartened or
With your strong backing, we are sure your child will put in her best in her board exams
this year, and not let stress about her future overwhelm her present. Bless your children
from our side and wish them good luck for their exams.