The issue whether all the students of a country must study a common curriculum until they enter college is a debatable one. On one hand a common curriculum ensures unformity in both academic and co-curricular development while on the other hand forcing various educational boards to conform to a fixed pattern questions their autonomy. After a full analysis, I partially concur with the argument.
Requiring students to study a fixed curriculum has certain benefits. For one it ensures that each and every student is equal in terms of academic and co-curricular development by the time they reach college. This ensures a level playing field for all college bound students. Under status quo students from smaller towns and cities do not get the same level of education as do students from larger metros .A standardized national curriculum will hence eliminate this bias.
A nationalized curriculm will also help create the most optimized curriculm for students. A nationalized curriculum can be created by chossing the best subjects from across all the education boards. Hence the all round development of students will also be achieved. For example certain boards may have an academically intensive curriculum with no emphasis on sports or extra curricular activities. A nationalized curriculum will ensure that students across various boards will have the best possible development on all fronts.
A nationalized curriculum will also create a level playing field for admissions to various professional courses. Since all the students have studied the same subjects, with the same difficulty level they can be graded relative to each other with respect to their GPA's. Under status quo normalization of scores of students from various boards takes place to arrive at a scaled score.
However there are a few pitfalls associated with this proposed measure. For one, more advanced boards may not want to temper their curriculums. For example the international baccalaurate(IB) lays emphasis on rigorous curriculm.If the IB board had to reduce the workload of its curriclum to be on par with other non rigorous state boards, the value of attaing an IB diploma would serously diminish.
Another shortcoming of this measure is seen in countries like India which is a country of multiple languages and traditions. For example the education board in one state would want its students to study the local dialect. The education board in another state may want students to study thier local language. Hence maintaing a common ground would be indeed very difficult
Hence in conclusion both sides of the argument have their fair share of pros and cons. While a common syllabus will ensure parity on both academic and co-curricular fronts and ensure proper and fair comparison of students it may not be feasible due to the shortcomings mentioned. A country should therefore continue to let various boards maintain thier autonomy in preparing their curriculum but should set guidelines for boards with less intensive curriculum. This will ensure that they too strengthen their curriculum and ensure competence among all students of the nation