Monday, 10 October 2011

Teachers responsibility

When we are young and vulnerable, it is our teachers at school that we look towards for support and approval. While the job of the teacher is to impart education, it is also a unique job that has the power to impact the future of these children they educate.

I remember way back when I was in school how there were teachers who shattered my confidence and self worth. But there were also these absolutely amazing teachers who took me out of that hole and set me on a path that led me to achieve what I set out to do.

I will never forget how a history teacher refused to mark me higher than another pretty student who she was fond of, despite the fact that my work was far superior. One time she even came up to me and said I did good work but she didn't want to upset her 'pet' student. No matter how well I did it was never good enough.

I had another English teacher a year or two earlier, who I idolized and admired. Something happened along the way when she got the wrong end of the stick and flew into a rage, singled me out in my class and point blank accused me of something I never did. From that day on, no matter how hard I worked or tried to impress her, she always marked me down. Facts emerged later that absolved me of any wrong doing in the matter concerned, but the teacher's ego never allowed her to talk to me about it, choosing to ignore me completely instead.

These were hard, hard blows, that did knock the wind out of me. When the exams finished,  and were marked outside the school by external examiners, I did end up top of the class in both History and English.

Teachers don't just teach. They are role models and people who wield tremendous power over the lives of children. While they are human beings, their ego, their personal preferences and moods have to take a back seat, so they don't adversely affect young minds

For every irresponsible teacher however, there are many more wonderful teachers who do a fabulous job indeed, and make us believe that teaching IS a noble profession.

Away from school I had to get extra tutoring in Math to help me as I was falling behind. At that time I came across the most patient, kind and determined lady whose house I went to four evenings a week to study. She was of humble means, had her own three children to look after, she cooked and cleaned while helping me with my work, and she was deaf.

She understood me, and after a while I understood her. And my confidence and abilities grew by leaps and bounds so much so that I graduated in accountancy and completed my post graduation in management.

It was with great pleasure when as a successful banker, I went back to school and met a teacher who had written me off. I just hope they reflect and reassess their teaching styles because I was just lucky to have made it inspite of it all. Not every child is so lucky.

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