The cognitive dissonance associated with "for-profit" schools

Schools are not supposed to be "for-profit" in India. But why? There are several arguments and counter arguments to this, which I discussed in my book.

All those arguments apart, I am increasingly coming to believe that the arguments for not allowing "for-profit" schools are rooted more in skewed mental models, rather than in any sound reasoning. The various reasons cited to not make schools for-profit are only force-fitted justifications to defend the underlying cognitive mental traps.

Else, how do we explain the paradox of proliferating for-profit education companies and tuition centres. All of these also form a part of "educating the child". However, people seem to have no problem with them being for-profit but they somehow have problem with schools being for-profit. 

The latest example is the Byju learning app. It's an app which claims to have all video lessons for content of a chosen grade. Each subscription costs a whooping Rs. 23,000/- per year (it's the basic price and the cost increases with increasing features).  The Ken reports that Byju's revenue last year, through subscriptions of this app, was an astronomical sum of 850 crore. 

Now, consider this. An organisation makes an app, through which it claims to provide content of a particular grade, in the form of videos. In this respect, it's similar to any traditional school. This organisation charges Rs.23,000/- per year, which is more than the fee of any average private school.

This organisation can be for-profit despite doing the same thing that schools do but schools can't be for-profit. Did you the get the irony or cognitive dissonance (whatever you may choose to call it)?


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