Coconuts Returning To India For Schooling
- By Sam George
- Published 09/25/2007
Sam George is the Executive Director of PARIVAR International - a non-profit initiative to address the needs of youth and families of Asian Indian origin in North America and to the Asian Indian community worldwide. Parivar means family in many Indian languages. Sam George also serves as one of the founding directors of Urban India Ministries
www.UrbanIndia.org Sam George and his wife, Mary have spoken at premarital and family events in many countries. They are parents of two boys and make their home in the northern suburbs of Chicago. Sam is the author of the book “Understanding the Coconut Generation: Ministry to the Americanized Asian Indians." Check out this website www.CoconutGeneration.com Coconut (brown on the outside, white on the inside) is a metaphor for the Americanized Asian Indians. Sam George can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
We all have heard of foreign born young people being send to India for medical and professional schools. We know of business and software folks returning to India to expand or start new ventures in the booming economy. But what about elementary or high school kids going to India for a worldclass eduaction?
When I researched it further, I found this is definitely something to watch out for. It’s fuelled by the growing perception among NRIs that school education in India is culturally enriching, academically superior and economically easier on the wallet. In the last decade, there has been an exponential rise—estimated to quadruple—in the number of NRI students in Punjab. International school are limited to hill stations of Missourie or Ooty anymore, but are popping up in major metros like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Cochin etc. See a report about schools for NRIs in India Today.
Is this an attempt to insulate foreign born wards from what they see as decadent western values? What about the prevalence of growing western values in India? How does it affect parent-children relationship, when children grow up in boarding schools? Will grandparents be thrust into raising their grandkids? What happens to assimilation or multiple culture shocks and adjustments? What does all this mean to families and youthworkers?