Public School teachers are in real trouble.They are in a terrible financial crisis but no one is listening to them- neither the government nor the society.Although numerically they are very strong, with a strength of more than 50 million, is it not rather surprising that they have failed to form a pressure group and they have never been able to compel the political parties to listen to them.Of course, this phase is not permanent, it is temporary but at the same time, it is a moment to introspect too.
There is a famous saying in English- We and only we are responsible for our misfortunes.The Public School teachers can not deny the fact that they themselves are responsible to a great extent for what they are facing today.Most of the public schools in our country are known for their irregularities and malpractices.Children have been deprived of basic rights like hiring library books, availing pure drinking water and participating in games and sports.In many of the school libraries books are as good as new. Why? Children are not allowed to touch the books, forget about hiring them.In the name of equal importance to sports and games, students , if they are lucky enough, get a games period only once in a week, although a good amount is collected from parents in the name of games fee.The worst thing happens in the laboratories. Even senior students do not have regular practical classes.It is a different thing that they get almost full marks in practicals during the board exams.The most deplorable one is that students are often subjected to corporal punishment in the name of discipline.
You may ask, why should the teachers be blamed for such malpractices? Parents and guardians leave their children in the school campus because they have faith in the teachers. They respect the teachers,love them and adore too.Teachers are the role models, both for the students and the parents.But teachers look down upon themselves.They degrade themselves to the level of an ordinary worker,ready to obey all the fair and unfair instructions of a half educated owner.
It is time for the teachers to rise to the occasion, to reassert their dignity and position in the society.They must regain the lost courage to protest against all the evils existing in the society.
Writer is an eminent educationalist and socio political analyst.