“The highest education is that which does not merely give us information but makes our life in harmony with all existence.” -Rabindranath Tagore.
Jean Piaget, a Swiss Psychologist and Philosopher had defined education as, “The principal goal of education is the schools should be to create men and women who are capable of doing new things, not simply repeating what other generation have done.” Another French novelist and poet, Anatole France quoted, “An education is not how much you have committed to memory or even how much you know. It is being able to differentiate between what you know and what you do not.”
The importance of education has been emphasized time and again. Education is considered as igniting a flame and not just stuffing a vessel. This idea suggests that education is an invincible medium to get rid of all forms of darkness and illuminate our lives.
It refers to the process of learning and acquiring knowledge, skills, and values. Or as various educationist say that it is "the creation of a sound mind in a sound body which helps develop man's faculty specially his mind so that he may be able to enjoy the contemplation of supreme truth, goodness and beauty".
In its broader sense, this process is unending with a definitive goal to develop various aspects of human personality and bring exceptional changes in society and country. Moreover, it is also seen equivalent to instruction in a narrow sense, where teachers in school or elders strive to impart structured set of knowledge to students using standard methods of teaching. This process aims at cognitive development of children along with shaping of their persona and character and lays the foundation for higher education on the other. College and universities further enhance competencies and core skills besides preparing students as agents of social reconstruction.
Renowned scientist Albert Einstein said, “Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of minds to think”. By this he means that the purpose of educational institutions is to train the young minds to think beyond textbooks, use knowledge intelligently and inculcate in them the idea of integrated understanding
History shows numerous examples of community development through education where members of backward classes or groups fought illiteracy to improve their lives, bring social reforms, and build harmonious relationships with other communities. While keeping the significance of education in view, the United Nations has also included quality education as one of the Sustainable Development Goals which are a blueprint to achieve a better future.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights emphasizes that “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights,” and that “Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.” Many of the deepest problems in current systems of education result from losing sight of this basic principle.
“Some of the brightest minds in the country can be found on last benches of the classroom”- Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam