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Top Indian Educationalist slams ‘dummy schools’, BCS, Shimla

Bishop Cotton School boys welcomed the eminent educationalist and career consultant, Dr Amrita Dass to school to provide career guidance to our senior Cottonians. She is the Founder Director of the Institute for Career Studies (ICS)

As part of Dr Dass’ advice to students she emphasised that the idea of leaving your school for the unnecessary pressures of a ‘dummy school’ (which does not conduct regular classes), just doesn’t make sense.

Sadly, one of the alarming trends in India these days is to leave the security of the sixth form years (Classes 11 & 12) with caring teachers and a nurturing environment to take JEE/NEET coaching by registering in a ‘dummy school’ for the Board Exams. This is definitely not a recipe for success!

The JEE/NEET results indicate that very few students in the top ranks took coaching while studying at ‘dummy’ schools. Most of them are from reputed schools and they also excel in extra-curricular activities which enhance their personality and develop important employability skills.

Moreover, studies have clearly established that dummy schools and coaching centres are, in fact, counter productive with high anxiety levels and a shocking increase in suicide cases among the students.

A majority of the students stated that their stay in dummy schools apart from being extremely stressful, also affected their creative side. They were trained for the competitive entrance exams but were Ill equipped with life skills.

To ensure a ‘best fit’ career, Dr Dass advised students to really think twice before taking their next steps regarding subject choices, courses and campuses. She said “Don’t be pressurized by your parents or peers to go in for the engineering or medical fields if these are contrary to your ‘dream career’ . Instead, plan on a ‘career by choice, not chance’ based on your proven aptitudes, talents, deep interests and aspirations.”

“These days there are numerous career options and alternative routes for students to reach their full potential. It is worth exploring the possibilities of pursuing liberal arts, interdisciplinary specialisations and other emerging fields that didn’t even exist 10 years ago! Hence, for future success and happiness make informed decisions by knowing what you excel in and are passionate about.”

The interactive career counselling workshop at BCS in the Irwin Hall also saw the boys taking personal aptitude and career interest tests. This was followed by individual counselling sessions to figure the next stage in their career journey after school.

Ms Pooja Ahuja, Senior Career Counsellor, ICS facilitated the sessions and conducted personalised career counselling. The boys will keep in touch with the counsellors so that the right help and advice can also be provided to the parents.

BCS Director Simon Weale said ‘A strong performance at Class X is just one part of the profile of a BCS education. Every boy at BCS develops an independence and range of qualities and inter-personal skills in our boarding community which allows them to stand out and thrive when they leave school.’

Dr Amrita Dass with Cottonians, HM Mr John and Head of Careers BCS Mrs Sunita Singh
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