Introduction: education is the backbone of a nation. No nation can prosper without education. Education leads a man from darkness to light. Ashutosh Mukherjee says, “there is nothing so costly as ignorance, Nothing so cheap as knowledge.” Primary education means education which is received in childhood. This is the basic education of man life.
The utility of education: it is needless to speak of the utility of education in our life. Education is light while ignorance is darkness. Education has no substitute. Education is a must for all. Education makes a man perfect. It brings about an all-round development in his mind, in his heart, and in his soul, in his values and in his attitudes of life. We also hear the same tune in Plato,s uttering, ‘education rationalizes a man,s mind, heart, and soul.’ The first message of Allah to our great prophet (Sm) was about education. It was ‘Ekra’ which means ‘study’. Islam says, “education rationalizes a man,s mind, heart, and soul.” The first message of Allah to the out great prophet (Sm) says, “it is a bounden duty for each and every Muslim -man and women to acquire knowledge.” Our Prophet (Sm) says, “acquire knowledge from the cradle till death.” He further says,
“acquire knowledge even if you need to go to china.”Our great philosopher Socretes says, “Better be unborn than untaught.”
All these statements bear out the fact of the supreme importance of acquiring knowledge.
Evils of illiteracy: literacy is a great curse. An illiterate man is not better than a beast. He cannot distinguish between what is right and what is wrong. A proverb also goes, ‘illiteracy is the root of all evils.’ Another proverb says, ‘better weep with the wise than laugh with the fools.’ It is also said, ‘a wise enemy is better than a foolish friend.’ Shakespeare says, ‘Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge the wing wherewith to fly to heaven.’ In fact, ignorance is a great devil. We are unfortunate that more than 75% of our people are illiterate. We are lagging behind much more the other countries of the world due to the devil of illiteracy.
Compulsory primary education: compulsory primary education means that the children between six to ten (class one to class five) must complete the primary education. A wise saying goes. ‘the child is the father of the nation.’ Children of today will lead the country tomorrow. Compulsory primary education is the crying need of Bangladesh. Our government could make out the supreme necessity of making primary education compulsory. It was made compulsory in 1990. Then it was declared: 1) all the children of the country ageing from six to ten must be brought under the primary education programme and 2) proper steps should be taken to ensure that no child should drop out before reaching class five.
Aims of the programme: manifolds are the aims of the programme. These are a) to develop the children mentally; b) to make them socially active; c) to make them better citizens; d) to make them conscious of their rights and duties; e) to teach them arithmetic; f) to make them aware of the world affairs; g) to inspire them is nationalism.
Steps were taken by the Government: our government. Has taken to following steps for setting the primary education system of solid foundation: 1) two cells called primary education and mass education have been opened 2) primary education administration has been extended up to the Upazila level. 3) a separate ministry for primary education has been opened. 4) projects for developing the infrastructure of the schools have been taken up. 5) steps have been taken to appoint teachers to the vacant posts. 6) Decisions have been taken to appoint 60% of teachers from among the women. 7) Major changes have already been brought about in the curriculum. 8) Arrangements have been made to impart training to the teachers. 9) Steps have been taken to distribute books free of cost. 10) Classes in double shifts have already been introduced.
Conclusion: we should all work hand in hand with the government. To make the compulsory primary education programme a grand success.