School is an institutional mechanism that tries to share knowledge and/or be an agent for social action. Looking back to the ancient history of schools, some schools of ancient Israel for example feel that the main purpose of education was to ‘produce faithful members of a nation – a son who would bring pride to his family and his people and glory to God. ’ In ancient Greece, the school was to produce a productive citizen, wise and mature and Rome followed the example of Greece. However, there are some schools which are just for education, where basic knowledge is shared based on the age through a planned curriculum.
There are schools which apart from providing knowledge through planned curricula do bring in social change through actions. I believe that a school has got to play the role of both i. e. sharing knowledge and also be an agency for social action. An example that can be cited following both is the ancient Hindu school called ‘gurukul’ , where apart from knowledge through planned curricula, there are learning sessions on various social norms and values that are normally practiced in the society.
The purpose of a school is thus to orient students to socialize by understanding the background, culture and values of that area which would further add to their individual growth and understanding for nurturing good citizens. Apart from this, there is a need for the schools to see to it that students are able to gain proper knowledge which should further help them to able to attain further education and employment.
Thus, we can say that the main purpose of schools is to provide education which would enhance the knowledge, skills and attributes of students and make them responsible citizens of the country. Even though schools as educational institutions have their own limitations of access to knowledge, funds to provide the services to students etc. based on the need and following the goal that the educational institution wants to achieve, teachers have to redesign their teaching strategies/pedagogy.