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Vulnerable Teachers

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  16 Sep 2017 12:00 AM GMT

Of late, there have been several disturbing reports of cruel teachers who have assaulted their students (usually small children, to justify the teachers concerned being regarded as bullies). There was also a report of a teacher who did not attend school for 13 years, but still maged to draw his salary and keep his job without doing any work. What is most wonderful is that he was not dismissed. These are unfortute examples of the serious aberrations in a very honourable profession. But now that our rulers seem to be concerned with nothing other than TET results, it is not too surprising that we should find as teachers those who are totally unfit to be in the profession in view of their attitude to their students. We now have a breed of teachers who see only their jobs and not their missions or even their responsibilities to their society. This is indeed most unfortute. People who take up teaching jobs because they cannot secure other jobs, must be told that this is a profession that does not permit the luxury of thinking only of one’s job to the exclusion of the beneficiaries of the recruitment made. Teachers who cannot put the needs of their students before their own needs should be thinking of other avenues of employment.

At the same time, there are also cases of teachers being bullied and victimized by the school authorities because they are not strong enough to assert their rights—at least to the extent of not submitting to threats. There is the rather alarming case of a woman teacher of Morigaon who was forced to eat beef and was constantly coerced to convert to Islam. So strong was the coercion to become a Muslim from a colleague that she has had to stop going to her school for fear of the consequences. This is because the head teacher of the school supported the bullying colleague who was forcing her to become a Muslim so that he could marry her. However, what was utterly surprising was that when the victimized teacher complained to the school magement committee, several members of the committee rebuked her, saying that she had been trying to malign the image of the head teacher and the other teacher pressurizing her to convert to Islam. The matter needs to be seriously examined by the district authorities with very firm and exemplary action being taken against the head teacher and the other teacher trying to forcibly convert a teacher, if the charges are substantiated.

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