Islamic Education System: A Complementary and Cost Effective Channel for Inclusive Elementary Education
Mohammad Israr Khan
The system of elementary education is usually characterized by the presence of multiple channels and avenues which work in parallel, complementary, and, often, in contradictory manners. Various forms of traditional indigenous systems of education (TISE) co-exist as functional avenues for universalization of primary and elementary education (UP&EE). Also, the mainstream educational system imposes a designed homogenization. However, as a matter of fact, hegemonic homogenization errs on two major counts i.e. cultural alienation and cost escalation. For these reasons, in a social system of cultural and ethnic plurality, variety of schooling channels is required. Various forms of TISE like Madarasa, Makatab, Mutt, Temple school, Ashram etc. are deep rooted in the social psyche. These are low-cost practical solutions to the problem of illiteracy in India. This paper is based upon a discussion of available literature followed by observations gained through field survey and primary data interpretation. It discusses the Islamic system of education and compares it with modern schools vis-Ã -vis the structure, working and performance on a multitude of variables. It ends with a few suggestions for intervention as well as a model for development of TISE as a low cost alternate channels for inclusive educational environment and universalization of elementary education in the third world, especially India.