The other day, three ladies – friends – as I was given to understand, came to me. They told me that their sons and daughters are studying at a famous school of Coimbatore. They looked worried; they said they have problems in speaking to the ‘Teachers’ of their children. I asked them ‘why?’ They expressed their inability to communicate in English with the ‘Teachers’, I asked them why they could not ‘speak in Tamil’ to the teachers. There was a wry smile. They were feeling bad because they could not speak in English. They seemed to feel inferior. I advised them to speak in ‘Tamil’ if they wanted to. They said, “It is a question of our prestige.” I feel sorry for such people who attach prestige to their ability or inability to communicate in English. “If you feel so, please learn” there is no other choice. They joined our course. In a matter of two months, they could fluently communicate in English. Such a simple job! I assured them that they are more knowledgeable in English than the teachers of their children are. They have indeed learnt ‘English Skills’ systematically and that is the point. “The earlier our people realise this, the better it is!”
Col (Retd) P Jeyaraj
Col’s Calibre Educators Pvt. Ltd.