Student suicide scare before board exam results : Why stress is there? What measure parents can take?

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With the date of Class X and XII board results of Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) approaching near, students and their parents are getting anxious. The end of May expects the results. Every year after the results, students often go into depression. Some students run away from home and many commit suicide. Students find it difficult to face their parents, after scoring poor marks in the examination.

As per the stats available, between 1987 and 2007, the suicide rate in India has increased from 7.9 to 10.3 per 100,000.  And there are higher death rates in southern and eastern states of India. Latest survey says that every hour, one student commits suicide in India. India has one of the world’s highest suicide rates for youth aged 15 to 29. In 2015, nearly 8,934 students committed suicide. In the five years time span of 2010 to 2015, 39,775 students killed themselves. And reports say that this rate is going to be much higher. In the past ten years, the pressure on students has increased by 50 per cent.

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Signs That Indicate Children are under pressure

  • Parents should be aware of how a child interacts with others: Sometimes a child or teen may seem healthy at home. But they act in unusual ways in another place with others. It is important for parents to check out with one another to know how child or teen is doing in the world around them. This will help to keep a check of their stress level.
  • Adverse changes in behavior: Most of the characteristic changes in children can be acting irritable or moody, routinely expressing worries, complaining more than usual about school, crying, withdrawing from activities that used to give them pleasure, displaying unusual fearful reactions, clinging to a parent or teacher. These also include sleeping too much or too little or eating too much. Sometimes they start avoiding meeting their parents, as seen mostly in case of teens.

Measures Parents can take

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  • Seek support – Parents, children, and teens do not need to tackle overwhelming stress on their own. If parents see significant symptoms of stress on a regular basis, it will be helpful to work with a licensed mental health professional. Such as a psychologist who has specialized training to help people identify problems and develop effective strategies to resolve overwhelming stress.
  • The society should take up stress-management among the school going children by introducing games and recreational activities.
  • As psychiatrists say,  not just schools but parents are equally responsible for the high-stress levels. Parents are not accepting their children as they are. They should examine the qualities of their child and start working on that instead of expecting just marks.
  • Teachers suggest that even if the student does not perform as well as expected, instead of scolding and criticizing the child, parents should support him and show him the brighter side of life.
  • No Praise– No one likes always hearing about all the things they’re doing wrong. Parents should offer more praise than criticism in all areas of your child’s life and make a concerted effort to catch your child being good. In most of the cases, children go into depression because their parents set high goals for them. Psychiatrists say that in such a situation, instead of scolding the child, parents should support him.
  • Teachers say that It is not necessary that the child has to be good in academics. There are many other fields like arts, dance, sports, etc. in which a child can be good. Instead of forcing the child to score better marks, parents should try and help the child develop his skills.

There is recent case of suicide from SAS Nagar, where a 15-year-old student of Class 9 committed suicide. He was stressed after scoring low marks in the revision exam, and he was found hanging at his house in Phase 10.

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As an initiative to tackle this issue, Madhya Pradesh Board of Secondary Education also launched a program ‘Ruk Jana Nahi’. This program was for the students who have failed in class 12 MP Board examinations. Under this program, the MP State Open Board will give students an opportunity to appear in the exam. This opportunity was also provided to students who fail in the class 10 exams. But the results were not so good.  With the existence of scheme like Ruk Jana Nahi,  about five students committed suicide last year in the state itself.

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The government of Madhya Pradesh has started taking this issue seriously, and the board exam helpline was launched to help parents and students. From the time of its launch in February, it has received around 27,000 calls from students in just three months. These calls had almost doubled as compared to last year when the helpline got 35,400 calls in six months during the 2016 exams.

Most of the callers want to make sure that they will clear the exam or not. Where some also inquire as to whether the state government’s ‘Ruk Jana Nahi’ scheme, launched last year, would continue this year too or not. The counselor in the helpline, Sindhu Dhoulpure said that “We will continue the scheme “Ruk Jana Nahi” this year too. Most students and parents are unaware of the plan. To promote the scheme in every district of the state, we will organize workshop as well as the campaign. We are planning to appoint a male and a female teacher in every government school for counseling. The counseling facility will be available round-the-clock for students.”

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Life is much more important than grades. There are super successful people out there who are not well qualified. Do watch, one of the most inspiring video that will inspire you to give more importance to life instead of grades. Do like, comment and don’t forget to share your views and suggestions in the comments section.