Responsibilities of a Teacher
Henry von Dyke has said about teachers and teaching – ‘There you have the worst paid and the best rewarded of vocations. Do not enter it unless you love it. For the vast majority of men and women it has no promise of wealth and fame, but they to whom it is dear for its own sake are the nobility of mankind. I sing the praise of the unknown teacher, king of himself and the leader of mankind’.
Many moons ago the system of education was imparted in Gurukuls and Madarsas. India was leading the way to usher the knowledge-seekers into the realm of wisdom. Time flew and a variety of learning establishments were developed in towns and cities to conduct academic activities. Most of the institutions were supported by monastic institutions. Some great educational hubs such as Nalanda, Takshila were the heart of education.
Time passed and years rolled into centuries. While taking a walk down memory lane we get the passing shadows of yesteryears when academic institutions were developed to impart true knowledge to the learners. Sad to say, those days have gone and commercialisation of education has made the process of education more market-oriented. Parents have to shell out their hard-earned money to educate their wards. In this grim situation it is the duty of those people who move around the corridors of power to bring some changes for visible improvement.
The teacher plays a very significant role to make knowledge value-based and fruitful. In other words, educators have a capacity to change the lines of fortune of knowledge-seekers because they are the role models of students. They can infuse the elixir of knowledge in the tender minds of students and make them more strong and accomplished to lift up their intellectual level of consciousness. They are the builders of students’ future by setting academic foundations in making them the leaders of tomorrow’s world.
Teachers should have good communication skills because they have to interact with students, colleagues, parents and other staff members of school. It is necessary for them to maintain the records of students and comply with the policies of governing body of the institution. They should follow the policies set by the education board and maintain documents as per the policies of school. Being a role model of students they should have adequate knowledge to answer the questions of the knowledge-seekers. It’s a common practice that when many people work at one place, then the feeling of rivalry develops and they start wagging their tongues. Backbiting, unkind remarks and eves dropping make the ambience in the school somewhat unfriendly. Sometimes they poke fun at each other. They should refrain from these unfriendly activities. They must maintain a respectable distance with their superiors at workplace. Teachers must update their knowledge but keep themselves away from the shadow of ego.
It is right for teachers to be sober and simple because gaudy dresses detract attention from academics. They should treat everyone equal without any discrimination. Nowadays, everyone is beset with problems that bring lines of tension on face. So don’t be a victim of worries and keep a smile on your face. An ideal teacher goes beyond the syllabus and reads avidly to enhance the treasure of knowledge. Being a committed educator s/he should strain every nerve to teach students well and also work hard to uplift the reputation of the institution. They should refrain from gossiping to utilise their time for creative activities. Cooperating fully with students, parents, administrative and academic staff they should be in liaison with parents from time-to time to bridge the gap of home and school.
Let us as teachers remember the prayer of the great Maria Montessori – ‘Help us, O Lord, to penetrate into the secret of the child, so that we may know him, love him and serve him according to your laws of justice, following your divine will.’
Dr. Hemantkumar Sharadchandra Pandya is not only a qualified teacher and an educational administrator but also a painter and photographer of repute. He has received several awards as Best Teacher and Best Principal. He has published seven books and several newspapers and magazines have carried his articles, paintings and photographs. Presently he is the Principal-cum-Director of Rameshwar Shikshan Sankul and Galaxy Global School, Ahmedabad. He has also won many accolades in painting, photography, etc.