WhiteHat Jr., What Are You Really Trying to Sell?

Photo by Mohammad Shahhosseini on Unsplash

As per official stats by the National Crime Records Bureau, at least one student commits suicide in India every hour, and this number rises to almost 28 suicides every day.

Every day! Yes, you read it right. Is it because of parental pressure, academic pressure, caste pressure, or understanding failure? Well, I think everyone is aware of this harsh reality and knows the answer, but no one wants to talk about it because every parent wants their children to be the best.

Been there, done that!

Being a part of this rat race by myself, I agree that every parent has certain expectations from their kids, but that does not mean that they should ignore their children's mental well-being like it does not exist. I have heard many parents saying that “mental pressure is just a myth and just an excuse for the weak children.” Really? What do you think?

“Taare Zameen Par”

It’s a Bollywood movie that is a perfect example of Indian society. A boy called “Ishaan” who has dyslexia, is criticized by his father for his poor academic performance and is sent away to a boarding school.

WhiteHat Jr Told To Remove Misleading Ads After Social Media Furore

To my surprise, last month when I was watching an IPL match (it’s a professional Twenty20 cricket league in India), I saw an advertisement from a company called “WhiteHat Jr.” (apparently sold to Byju’s in a $300 million all-cash deal 3 months ago) which was to promote coding education among 10–12 years kids.

The ad featured a 6th Class boy who has developed his own mobile app, and investors are fighting outside his house to invest in it.

Wait. What?

6th-grade students are now forced to learn to code just because Sundar Pichai and Mark Zuckerberg were child prodigies and Sundar Pichai is from India? To my surprise, that kid’s parents were proudly showing off that their kid has made his own app by learning coding skills from this online platform, and others should also do that, and foreign investors are fighting in front of their house to sign a deal. Really?

Wasn’t digitization an opportunity to eradicate inequity in education?

I totally agree that coding is a skill, and learning code early has its own advantages. Like learning competency at an early stage of life, that does not mean that we shouldn’t make kids learn how to code, but coding definitely does not equate to money. Hence, children should ‘learn to code’ by not setting the right precedent if we want it to be an important part of the curriculum like art, music, sports, or physical and mental education.

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An engineer by peer pressure, corporate professional by parent’s expectations & product designer by passion. I tell stories with a tinch of intellectualness.

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