Are Teachers Sincerely Fulfilling Their Responsibility?

by Dr Rafi Ramzan Dar

Are we really trying to aspire for the all-round development of our students or becoming obstacles in the way of their progress?

Classrooms are supposed to be clean. KL Image Saifullah Bashir

Today is September 5, the day that is remembered in the annals of our history with golden words as Teacher’s Day. There is not an iota of doubt that the world has witnessed existence of many great teachers from time to time. When we talk about the great teachers, names like Chanakya, Confucius, Maria Montessori, Albert Einstein, Rabindranath Tagore, Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, Swami Vivekananda, APJ Abdul Kalam and Anand Kumar reverberate in every mind. Here, our purpose is not to enlist the names of these great people, but to try to understand what made them great.

A great teacher is not the one who teaches and uses his skills and intellect to complete the prescribed syllabus only but the one who thinks, aspires, works and makes sure the all-round development of his taught. A great teacher is a well-trained, educated, active, charactered, honest, efficient and reserved persona.

Basics of A Teacher

When we use the word “trained” for a teacher, it does mean that he must possess the capacity to change a raw student into a ripe human being. An educated trait of a teacher glorifies his ways and approaches utilized for the modification of his students behaviour at every stage. Likewise, the “active” trait of a teacher speaks volumes about his dynamic nature. A great teacher never ever allows his being to think, act or propagate stagnation of mind and soul. Instead, he seems to be ready every time to play any role despite the circumstances.

In the same way, “character and honesty” reflect the moral and ethical dimensions of a great teacher. Teaching has always demanded, honoured and remembered in good books a person of sound morality and ethical glamour with high standards of behaviour and thought process. Besides, a teacher must be reserved. He must understand and try to maintain the gap of decency between himself and his students. Every time or at any stage he should think and work like a true mentor and a role model to his students.

While looking into these characteristic features, it becomes quite clear that a teacher is a balanced, well equipped and completely refined entity of kaleidoscopic traits organized into a single mind, body and soul. Now the question that needs our serious attention is that do our teachers sincerely fulfil their responsibility? The answer is a big No in crystal clear terms.

What We Lack As Teachers?

Being teachers we are expected to play some important roles both towards our students as well as towards our fellow teachers but most often we are completely engrossed with something else. We think and work for the completion of the prescribed syllabuses only that too by entering late and making early exits from our classrooms. We are never on time.

A 1912 photograph showing the group of teachers of Biscoe School in Srinagar

Besides Sunday’s and other gazetted holidays, our thirsty stomachs keep on waiting for off working Friday’s. We don’t care for regularity and punctuality of our students. We don’t make our students to work hard by submitting assignments or conducting regular class tests. We don’t take pains in framing question papers. We don’t want to be strict during examinations rather use lethargic approach while checking the respective answer booklets. We assign marks arbitrarily. Most of us don’t want to prepare their lectures daily or properly. In case we do so, we never go beyond the bookish knowledge. We don’t consider multiple sources while preparing our lectures. Instead, we stick to the age old and obsolete notes.

Has anybody among us ever thought that I should do some value addition to my daily lectures? Or in that case, do we really train and prepare our students to be up to date or think out of the context? Have we ever tried to inculcate some moral and ethical sense in our students during classroom lectures? Do we really propagate environmental and aesthetic values side by side in our students? Do we work to develop competitive taste in our student’s minds? Do we talk about our glorious culture, traditions, norms and Values in our classrooms? Do we ever try to develop social, political, economic or scientific temperament in the young minds during our lectures?

Facilitators or Inhibitors?

Being teachers, think for a while that are we the facilitators or the inhibitors? Are we bridging the gap between a student and his career or widening it? Are we really trying to aspire for the all-round development of our students or becoming obstacles in the way of their progress?

Our role doesn’t end here. Aren’t we the teachers who involve ourselves in framing, consolidating and regularly working for securing the objectives of our respective lobbies. Don’t we bid our honesty and integrity for the sake of petty gains? Don’t we work tirelessly to safeguard our ego and image? Don’t we often involve ourselves in back biting to the chair?

Dr Rafi Ramzan Dar

In fact, we are the epicentres of indiscipline and unproductive outputs in our higher seats of learning. While doing so we compromise our integrity and probity as well as throttle wide open the noble profession of a teacher. We were the mentors and the torch bearers. Alas! Such tendencies have occupied the sub-conscious part of our minds. We have become more materialistic and asocial. We flow with the flow. In fact, we leave no stone unturned and choose to remain miles apart in fulfilling our responsibilities and obligations. Today’s teacher is a teacher by chance and not by choice!

Let’s wake up. The world is watching and laughing at us. Happy Teachers Day!

(Author teaches Geography at Government Degree College, Bejbehara. The opinions expressed in this write-up are those of the author’s and do not purport to reflect the views of Kashmir Life.)


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