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A study in absence

Outsourcing holiday homework makes business sense. But doing away with it might be better.

india Updated: Jul 08, 2012 21:53 IST
Hindustan Times

There are many among us who crib all the time about India’s rapidly increasing population and the pressure it creates on the country’s resources and infrastructure. But sometimes, the country’s mega population can also be a huge advantage: there is always someone to extend a helping hand when the going gets tough. Take for example, the ever-growing tribe of ‘homework aunties’; they ensure that families enjoy quality time together during summer holidays by taking over the responsibility of finishing holiday projects of their wards.

This outsourcing industry is pretty large and the ‘homework aunties’, mostly science graduates, usually charge anything between Rs 250 and Rs 1,000 for one school project. And apparently there are so many of them doing this kind of work and there is so much work pressure, that it can soon become a virtual cottage industry. No matter which city you live in, there is always someone to take up such school assignments. In fact, the money is so good and the demand so high that even local stationery shops are into such activities.

While such opportunities for the young is great news in a country with high levels of unemployment, we would love to propose something radical, even at the risk of being unpopular with the homework aunties and the schools: stop putting such unnecessary load on the young ones — and their parents — and do away with the concept of summer holiday homework and projects. Why can’t young minds have four weeks in a year to do whatever they want to, even if it means watching silly cartoons on TV and lazing around in the house?

ht epaper

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