Public university admission coaching legal despite government ban
In spite of the fact that government policy prohibits private coaching by teachers of government and non-government schools, colleges and madrasas, tuitions for public university admissions remains legal as they have been left out of the ban.
On February 7 this year, citing the government policy formulated in 2012, the High Court commented those appointed as teachers in educational institutions cannot teach outside their institutions or in coaching centres.
But the policy mentioned nothing about university admission coaching by freelancers, which has now turned into a big business.
Located in Dhaka's Farmgate area, coaching centre Unmesh caters to students aiming to get admitted to the medical colleges all over Bangladesh.
Alif Munshi, management official of Unmesh, said: "We started offering our services since last May. This year, around 1,200-1,300 students got admitted to our coaching centre, and a majority of these students came from outside Dhaka."
Asked about the legality of university admission coaching, University Coaching Center (UCC) Manager,, Al Mamun said that the High Court had not banned freelancers from teaching in at coaching centres.
A gift that keeps on giving
The university admission coaching business usually gives rise to businesses like hostels, which may be considered equally exploitative, in the neighbouring areas. The quality of accommodation of these hostels is poor, as is the quality of food.
They claim that these coaching centres play no role in ensuring university admission.
Speaking to Dhaka Tribune, Prof Monjurul Islam, professor of Dhaka University, English department, said, “The coaching business market has been created and has sustained because of the demand. Thus, first of all, parents need to get away from the spirit of competition.
Changes in the education system will also have to be brought about. Classification The evaluation system based on classification should be eliminated and replaced with test evaluation method. In the light of education policy, the education system has to be managed. We must bring about radical change from the very beginning.”
He also said, “Coaching centers advertise themselves completely illegally by using pictures of students. Throughout the year, coaching centers run advertising campaign for all types of admission tests, including medical and engineering. ”
The educator believes that, in order to stop the practice of enrolling students in coaching centers, the problem has to be addressed from the root. In addition to the responsibility of the students, parents and teachers, the government should take effective steps to generate awareness about the issue.
AN Rasheda, former head of the Biology department of Notre Dame College, said coaching has now become a kind of business. The primary purpose of coaching should be teaching, but mostly coaching centers operate for profit, which is unacceptable.
She mainly blamed parents for the rise in the trend of coaching centers, saying that it is the parents who are very enthusiastic about enrolling their children in coaching centers. Although she does not oppose the system completely, she but she believes that there should be some control.
ManoshChowdhury, professor of the Department of Anthropology at Jahangirnagar University, told the Dhaka Tribune that parents enroll their children in coaching centers out of worry and insecurity. Their insecurity stems from seeing other children going to coaching centers. As a result, they find themselves in a predicament and start to consider coaching centers a necessity.
Regardless of the situation, they remain worried. However, if the education system were strong, it would have been easier to discourage the use of coaching centers. ‘Coaching is the kind of business that I am not in favour of,’ he added.
Some students admitted that it is necessary to study at a coaching centre in order to get a chance to study at a university, as it serves as a guideline for them.
However, some have said the opposite. According to them, proper and in depth knowledge about appropriate textbooks and question papers’ trends from the previous years’ admission tests can be more helpful, than the support of any coaching center.
Justice Sheikh Hasan Arif and Justice Razik-Al-Jali passed double bench judgment on five writs, seeking a direction to stop the coaching trade.
After the verdict, Deputy Attorney General, Mokhlesur Rahman, said that teachers can only take classes if it is a dire need for the students for a certain of amount after school hours.