Monday, December 28, 2009

Where is My Teacher?

According to an HRD audit report, there are 7.72 lakh untrained teachers and there is a vacancy for 12.06 lakh across the country (published in a TOI article on December 27, 2009). This is a major setback government in the way of implementation of the ‘Right to Education’ successfully. No wonder that many government schools in the country are actually running without any teacher.

We hear every day that millions of educated young Indians are unemployed. So, what prevents these unemployed young people to head towards the education sector and take teaching as a career? What makes one of the most respectful professions so repelling for the young population?

For a while let us forget about schools, the college education in the country also suffers from the lack of professors and even the reputed IITs are no exception.

The major reason for the lack of interest of Indian youth in the education sector is the lack of money. The salaries and perks given to teachers in most of the Indian schools and colleges, government or private, are far less than what teachers can get in any other profession. I still remember how this belief was prevalent among the students in my school that the worst of graduates take teaching as profession. And it is very evident in what one of my classmates quoted about the teachers in our school:

All the teachers here are failures. They came to teach us as they couldn’t do anything.”

Of course, I didn’t completely agree with him but is this statement 100% false? Teaching, being a low-paying job is seen as a rescue profession. And there is a lot of frustration built up in teachers because of this (low salaries) leading to low self-esteem and decreased love for students and concern about their future. As a result, instead of inspiring and stimulating the young mind with love and affection and understanding them, they decide to show them “Who is the BOSS?”. And this leads to very serious consequences as far as the future of students is concerned. The creativity is lost and studies merely become a routine affair with a lot of rote learning.

Some days ago, I read that the schooling system in Norway is among the best in the world. And what was surprising to know was that teaching is the most attractive profession for the young people in the country. And when an industry draws the best of the minds, it has to become the best in the world. But as I think, no industry can lure the best of mind until it provides with the best to those best minds.

Hope those sitting at the top of our education system understand this soon!!


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