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Spelling should be “freed up” and apostrophise banned”, the
Emeritus professor of University College said today, He
says that it is possible to learn a language,being free from the pressures,
Am nobody to talk about spelling and English, there are very
learned people here and some of them have been teaching and know all there is
to know about education.
A bit about myself. Both my grand fathers were scholars. My
maternal grandfather was the author of various books on the history Persian and
Urdu literature. And my paternal grand father had read law at Cambridge. He also made headlines in the
1930s when he sent his would be son in laws to the UK for education, instead of giving
dowry to his daughters.
He sent his only son, my father to England at the
tender age of eight years for schooling,
and my father remained here until his
I on the other hand have not had any formal education.
When my father was posted to various cities in his job, my
parents couldn’t find a school they liked to send me.
So they decided to have me educated at home by private
tutors. The only problem was that those teachers were the most boring and cruel
idiots I have ever had the misfortune to meet, before and since. I remember the
maths teacher, who was an emaciated, sour looking and bitter so and so, who
never lost an opportunity to beat my palms with a freshly cut tree branch. The result was obvious , I didn’t make any
progress and they were despatched.
Them my father decided to teach me. The only problem was he
had no patience or ability to teach. I
never did any home work because I found learning boring and soon my father lost
interest. So my sole education was progressing to the “National Reader” level
two! And my mother taught me the Urdu alphabet up level two.
I acquired the reputation of not being interested in
learning. Wise aunts shook their head in dismay and proclaimed that since I was
a girl, it didn’t matter. I will soon be married and that will be the end of
I was too busy climbing trees, running races with the
children of the neighbourhood, and having a good time. But as soon as I could
read sentences, I started reading. I read magazines, and books and found that
with every effort I could read faster and better. My parents encouraged that,
we had libraries in every town, and I read about four books a week. Both in
Urdu and English. I learnt to speak English by listening to the world service
of the BBC.
I became fluent enough to get a place in the degree course
for health visiting at the age of sixteen, and because my father disapproved
and threw me out, more determined. At the end of three years I came out with a
first class degree.
Since then I have done a degree in the UK in nursing.
Tried O and A levels and got grades A and Bs throughout.
When I said I wanted to write, my father laughed and said
that you needed proper education to do that. Perhaps he was right. I need to
spel check, and cant write with the panache and authority some of you do. But I
think I can express myself.
So may be there is some truth in what the professor says.
You need to be free for learning!