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Publish Date: 10-Oct-2020 04:57:13

A CROWN FOR THE TEACHERS --- Week 8 of the lockdown has started and as the relaxations are announced and new regulations implemented, the World is still learning to adapt and live with its new best (worst) friend – the Virus! I read recently that UNESCO, in praise of the great efforts of the teachers around the World, had remarked, “Even though Schools have closed but Schooling hasn’t”. I extend my kudos to the wonderful super teachers who have shown their love not just for their children but also for their vocation. This is what got me thinking for my next food for thought! Teachers are often underrated and the vocation is seen as an easy, few hours job. At least, in India, it’s still seen as the perfect half day work for young women. Not something many choose, rather just get doing. The lockdown home teaching has brought out the real essence of this vocation. Teachers have become not just the subject facilitators for the child through online classes, but also their guide, counselor and BFF of sorts. The parents too are turning to teachers for counseling and advice. This has opened all reservations and has converted many into accepting that teaching is definitely not a cake walk. The teacher is almost like a 24 x 7 on call super human. A long due regard for the teachers can be seen growing among parents and students alike. It’s a heartening scenario as this will lead to mindset changes and hopefully brilliant minds will now voluntarily join this profession. Most of the voids and faults in the system which we discuss and ponder are more due to the lack of dedicated personnel than otherwise. I feel that half our battles will be won once we get more enthusiastic youngsters joining as facilitators of knowledge for the new era ahead. The role of the teacher too is changing --- it’s no longer a package delivery system rather it’s the art of creating and sculpting new, beautiful, diverse and creative minds. The teacher is a facilitator who nudges the child into the direction according to his / her potential and abilities. The new found educator needs to be an analyst, a researcher, an artist, a psychologist, a nurturer, a parent, a friend, a guardian, a coach all at the same time. The way we train this important super human needs our in depth evaluation and reforms. We can talk and discuss policies for education, methodologies to be used in classrooms, use of technology etc, but till we equip the driver of this machinery the products are not going to excel. As a positive of this lockdown, I have received many messages from parents applauding the efforts of the teachers and thanking us for the care and importance shown to their child (irrespective of age and school level). Many have gone on to say that they have newfound regard for the teachers. On behalf of all the super educators (if I may take the liberty) I say to them --- Thank You, but it’s about time! We have always loved our work, our children and shall strive to continue doing so --- Virtually or literally!! Thank you for considering the teaching fraternity as one among the backstage warriors of this difficult time! It’s time we gave them each a Crown!

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