Introduction: The major source of evil in our country is illiteracy. It lies at the root of everything that hinders the progress of our country. Light of knowledge unites people to agitate for their demands. But illiteracy keeps people in darkness. They fail to unite and demand what they really want. It is not merely necessary to carry the torch of education to all the corners of the land, but also to people of all the ages. The main cause of the sufferings of the people is not at all their lot, but ignorance and illiteracy lead them to suffer so much.
Indian Constitution lays down universal compulsory education as a directive principle of the state. But little has been done so far. The children of today no doubt have some chances of getting education – at least the torch of it. But the grown up adults never had the opportunity of feeling the light of knowledge and blindfolded they move about their orbit of life.
Problem of adult education is a serious one. All our adults are engaged in the drudgery of earning their living. They cannot afford the luxury of attending schools. Even attending night classes is too much for them. For they get hardly two square meals a day. Adult education without offering job and food is almost a mockery. We should feel the gravity of the problem. Kerala, however, has set an example by eradicating illiteracy from the State. All other States should follow the footsteps of Kerala for prompting adult education actively.
Importance of adult education: The literacy ratio of any country is extremely important. A country with educated adult population is bound to achieve social, economic, technological and moral progress. The importance of adult education is highlighted below in points.
Education enables a per person to earn his living. An educated person is able to overcome his individual poverty. An educated individuals is capable of looking after himself and his family.
Education leads to an increase in the overall standard of living. They follow good hygiene habits as well.
Educated people are capable of bringing mass changes in the society. They fight against evil social practices such as dowry, early marriages, caste system, etc.
They contribute towards the overall progress of the nation. A country achieves great success where a large number of adults consists of educated people such as doctors, lawyers, chartered accountants, engineers, etc.
Educated parents are able to guide their children in their studies.
Educated adults can adopt teaching as their profession. In this way, they can further contribute towards building an educated nation.
Educated people are capable of reading and writing. They will never sign any document without fully understanding the meaning of its content. In this way, their rights are secured.
Various way: Adult education can take place in many ways. An illiterate adult can learn to read and write. Other than literacy, they can join Vocational Training institutes, where they can learn skill and techniques for specific trade. In a training institute, they will be taught as per the curriculum, which will enable them to pursue a better career.
They can join a part-time course. In this way, they can both work and learn at the same time. They can join self-development courses that suit their need.
How to Promote Adult Education? Adult Education can be promoted in several ways. Every literate person should spare some time to educate illiterate people as a service to humanity. The should be mass campaigns to promote adult education. The importance of literacy can be shown in Televisions, radios and other media of instruction. The Government should also encourage adults to participate in Vocational Education and Training (VET) programmes.
Efforts should be made for the establishment of modern libraries in Villages. Village library should have collection of educational, and informative books. There should be latest journals and leaflets to promote their awareness and understanding.
Full literacy of the masses is a great task. We we must work hard to achieve it.