Monday, September 20, 2021

Need to invest more on classrooms and teachers

School teachers bring unique experience to every child’s life. They provide real life lessons that cannot be delivered by technology. It is important to invest more in improving quality of teaching in schools and also in improving the quality of life for teachers themselves.

Editorial

The form and delivery structure of education will keep changing with time. Technology has affected and will continue to affect the way education is used and served to the learning humanity.

However, the role of teachers shall remain relevant even far into future. Technology has still not been able to deliver the human element that a teacher brings to the classroom.

A lot has been debated and discussed about the efficacy of virtual classrooms and teacher-less learning.

It is true that in some cases the virtual classrooms and technology-driven learning processes may be more effective than the actual teacher-centric classrooms.

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However, as far as teaching small children is concerned, the real classrooms presided over by real teachers are just irreplaceable.

Real classrooms do not just provide lessons. They also provide real life experiences. You have not learnt life lessons, if you have not learnt to ‘weather’ one or two tough teachers in your school journey, or one or two ‘bullies’ in your class.

For a small child, teachers are not only knowledge-belting machines, but also a human interface that brings to him or her a daily experience completely different from the experience he or she has with parents.

For a child, a human teacher, often, is the first prolonged interaction with the outside world. The bonding and the trust, or mistrust in some cases, that it generates in a child’s life is incomparable.

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And this is why it is important to invest more and more in improving the quality of primary education.

Children are our biggest assets. In order to ensure quality education for them, we need excellent teachers too.

Sadly, we have not invested much in improving the quality of teaching in India.

We have a large number of good and qualified teachers in our schools. However, most of such good teachers are in the private sector, while the government schools, where majority of children study, remain poorly placed in terms of quality of delivery of education.

Teachers in private schools are poorly compensated. While the compensation is far better for the government teachers, they suffer due to lack of training, poor infrastructure and a lax bureaucracy.

For emerging as a strong and growing country, we need a strong education system and good teachers.

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It is possible to develop good teachers if we invest more and more on teacher education and compensation.

Often schools are overly rated for their infrastructure, while the teachers who comprise these schools are poorly compensated.

Primary, middle and high school education is completely dependent on teachers.

It would be wise if we invest more on school education and if a large part of that investment goes to help teachers earn more for their very crucial role in shaping future of the country.

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