There was a time when Indian elementary schools, high schools, and colleges assumed that they had fulfilled all of their educational responsibilities when they had provided instruction for students. It was of secondary consideration whether the students premed or could profit from the instruction given. But the modern school closely attends to the personal background, experience, and mental and emotional functioning of the learner as a developing and maturing individual. To quote J.A. Humphreys and A Traxler, the school “helps to bring to bear on the individual those influences that stimulate and assist him, primarily by his own efforts, to develop to the maximum degree consistent with his capacities. In the words of Teacher Training, the institution offers activities and employs procedures through which the individual is encouraged to make the most of himself,” and Guidance aims at fulfilling this most important function of the school.
It is agreed by all that all is not well with our educational system – Every stage in the educational ladder–Elementary, Secondary and University–requires reformation and reorganisation. One of the chief defects of the present system of education is that the talents of the individuals are not being properly harnessed. Education is not according to the aptitude, ability, and interest of an individual. The students are made to read subjects without reference to any goal. Many students are at a loss to understand what subjects to take. They come to a higher secondary school with little or no knowledge of the subjects offered. It is unusual to find pupils who know enough about themselves, the courses offered or the relation of school subjects to vocational fields to plan the programme that Its, hem best. Many inappropriate choices are made due to lack of proper guidance.
The parents due upon taking their children certain subjects which they think to be very useful without caring required abilities or not. They fail to realise the fact that low ability combined with high ambitions generally leads to inappropriate choices. There are many cases when students, whose IQ’s are below 100 take up difficult subjects and fail to of their attempts to do so. High ability coupled with a low level of inspiration creates equally serious problems. In the absence of any scientific guidance and counselling, inefficiency, frustration and failureare bound to occur. Our educational institutions areproducing misfits on a large scale who are unable to make their lives happier and who fail to contribute their best for society. This leads to a national wastage. “A student who would have done in brilliantly in the humanities may, for want of proper guidance, take up science—or vice versa—and be put down as a dud, not only in school but even in later life if this results in a wrong choice of career. If the choice had been correctly made, his whole life pattern may have been different,” observe the educators of Early Childhood Education Program. A school student who fails to choose his course of study ‘wisely and intelligently—which, obviously, requires expert guidance—is apt to find his success in school career jeopardised.
Lack of educational guidance has created what is known as the problem of ‘educated unemployment’.