“Parents, please let the children go ahead and chase their dreams instead of pressurising them for scoring more marks in the examinations”. This was one of the requests made to the parents on 6th October by Sudeshna Roy, chairperson of West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights (WBCPCR) during an interaction session with them at the century-old St Joseph’s Convent at Chandannagar.
As part of WBCPCR’s ambitious plans to reach out to the parents of the state for the all-round development of the children, the commission with its officials came down to this school at the school’s alumni association JAAC as they felt proper parenting was very important.
“Now, most of the children have no siblings and they spend their time with the parents. Be it first generation learners or children with educated parents, they have different kinds of problems created by their parents,” Roy said at the meeting.
So, the parents also need guidance and help, she said citing instances from her life when she read a lot of books on scientific parenting before and after becoming a mother.
Urging them to be educated and trained first, the WBCPCR chairperson requested both the parents to help their boys and girls guide into proper use of online resources, social networking platforms, discuss the issues like menstruation, pregnancy, gender equality and other life skills.
“This is the first time, direct interaction with parents took place. More such meetings where parents can talk about the changing modes and changing values in their lives and how they should deal with it would be organised,” she said.
The parents and teachers present at the programme thoroughly enjoyed the lectures and question-answer sessions with the commission members and a psychiatrist, Dr Rima Mukherjee.
Highlighting the recent death of a student following alleged ragging at the hostel of Jadavpur University, she said that all the alleged perpetrators were high scorers in their board examinations. “But, they had not undergone character building and value education which resulted into this sad death. It proves the futility of scoring high marks,” she said.
“Help your children to make mistake, guide them to accept defeat and rebound with more vigour, instead of scolding and victimising them,” she urged the audience.
The need for such a session with the parents had been felt by the authorities of the school famed for its legacy of value-based education. “The alumni association arranged this session when it was noticed that parents are now more inclined to academics and marks and not much for these activities,” Sister Anna Maria, Principal, St Joseph’s Convent at Chandannagar said.
The school has a legacy of imbibing value education, extra-curricular activities along with academic curriculum. The alumni members shared with the school authorities how these activities helped them to go a long way in building confidence and resilience in life.
“A child who paints or recites is as much important as the one who excels in science or mathematics. In this dynamic and changing world, this can only be achieved with the support of the parents and we strongly wanted a parenting orientation,” she said.
Mandira Bose, President of JAAC said that the alumni also facilitated self-defence and communication sessions for senior students along with this parenting meeting.