Who the teachers are?

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One fine morning of the last week of August, I found that someone had added me to a new Whatsapp Group-‘parents’. The only growth one can experience during the pandemic is being added to multiple whatsapp groups. If you are a teacher, it’s a windfall for you. Growth in the number whatsapp group is inversely proportional to growth in income during the pandemic. Cut to the real story, read the initial few messages from the chat…

Hello everyone**** dis side…

My daughter is in kg F class…

Hello

I just want to know tht how many of u paid fee…for school

Hello

We have paid extra money already with admission fee

Bcoz school is sending msg for the same

And I m strongly against with this

However kids have bot been to school even a single day

Not*

Hello ***** i spoken to u right now

Yes

Yes

I Dont want to pay……

This covid 19 is for all of us

We can strongly convey it to school that we don’t want these classes

My husband calls many of u

Thing is tht we have to take stand

Kids are not learning anything from these

Sure

Kids are not getting anything

They can send work through WhatsApp. That will save lots of time at our end

If all of us will get together….. we can fight with this system

Yes we also agree we already have paid alot

where are the other parents plz give your advice

My daughter forgot everything wt she learnt before

 There is no use of this time consuming classes at all

 Even classes are just of no use  just wastage of our time

Going through the chat , I clearly understood the agenda. Alas! Rather than being happy I was perplexed. I am not only a parent.

Have you ever wondered what drives parents to get their wards admitted to a school?

Make your list!

In my opinion, They consider the following factors.  

1.  Brand Name

2.  Results of board classes

3.  Discipline

4.  Infrastructure

5.  Fee

6.  Locality

7.  Class composition in a school

May be several other factors, but the one which no one cares about is… Who the teachers are?

Don’t you believe me?

 I would ask you to go through some of the school’s websites. Search- faculty/teachers.In most of the cases, the search result would be zero. In some cases, you may find a photo of some teachers, often it’s a group photo. Faculty or teacher is not a prominent tab on the web page of any of the leading schools.

 If you look at the schools websites, you’ll find that schools do not ask you to get your child admitted because they have wonderful faculties/teachers. Even if you visit a school, they show you the infrastructure, i.e swimming pool, ACs, sports facilities, music rooms, etc. Generally neither you get a chance to interact with teachers, nor you ask for it.

In the present situation, when all other things which usually symbolize a modern school fail to make a meaning in online classes, schools remember, TEACHERS. In their appeal to parents, they say … “we need to pay teachers”. 

 Why would parents pay a heed to a school’s outcry? They didn’t admit their children in a particular school because teachers teach their wards. That was not their concern. Neither school told them that it’s teachers who teach, not the infrastructure. Why should parents believe that teachers have a role in teaching or schools also have teachers?

But in online classes, they can only see teachers, peeping through the screen .How can teachers represent schools? On their websites, schools don’t claim it. In their admission brochure, they don’t show it.  How can teachers represent a school? That’s the biggest dilemma middle class parents are facing. In their imagination of a school, teachers don’t exist. They never asked the school..Who the teachers are? What’s their profile? Are they paid regularly ? Are they professionally trained? Where did they graduate from?

 If you are a parent, ask yourself, ” Have I ever wondered about these questions?

 Is it so that parents are complacent with corporate players in making schools a teacher proof organization? Or they may be ignorant about it. Teacher proof school is the one where, who the teachers are,doesn’t matter. Suddenly parents have an inconvenient revelation-School has teachers and they are to be paid. 

The model of making school a teacher proof organisation is so successful that even the government is ready to accept it. Policies have been amended time to time to make teachers insignificant in an organization called school.

 What’s wrong with this?

Teachers are losing jobs. Even if they have been retained they have definitely got a pay cut. But, what are we losing as a society? We are losing a profession-the profession of teaching. And the outcome has started surfacing clearly. What does a culture of teacher proof school has done to us? Let us have a look on the following headline!

     ‘Upset with CBSE result’, two students end life in Gurugram’ (The Tribune, 19th July, 2020)

 Can there be a more horrific nightmare for parents?  I have seen parents lamenting even when their wards scored 97 percent but failed to achieve 99 percent. You might have also seen it. Isn’t it ridiculous? But, this is what a ‘dream school’-a teacher proof school produces.

 For parents, this is the time to rewire their understanding of a school. I agree, their wards study in school, but parents too need to educate themselves about schooling. Parents need to take a stand now to stop the sinister campaign to make school, teacher proof. Otherwise, it may strengthen this system where parents would be no more than customers.  And their children would be treated more like raw materials waiting to be processed to a finished material.  Human to Material-What a Dehumanization!

About paying the school fee, I think you would pay it first time for a right reason-Teacher’s salary. Go ahead and pay if you can . The fee you pay would save a job. Start asking right question which may save Teaching as a profession. What’s the right question? It’s simple- who the teachers are?

You may also like to read.http://reflectivediary.com/schools-are-closed-and-teachers-are-free/


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