113. Investing on teachers?

I am just a teacher. I am not an expert on education. I don’t have any Phd yet to claim that but here’s what I think will help significantly change our education and education system. So, how do we do that?

The answer is simple – by investing on/in/for teachers.

Let’s put aside the vision, mission and objective of our ‘troubled’ education system for a later discussion. Let me just focus on one of the aspects of teachers and their development.

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(Pic: Sikshak magazine)

The headline pretty much says it.

Most teachers don’t read. Only few regularly buy and read books. And many never touch books which are beyond the syllabus.

And I would definitely make a mistake here if I come to a quick judgment. Judgments like – the teachers are lazy… the teachers take their job for granted… the teachers don’t like to develop professionally.

Plus, judgments like – that’s why Nepal’s education system sucks because the teachers themselves don’t read anything new once they become teachers.

It might be a part of that reality but that’s unfair.
In fact, very unfair to most of the teachers out there.

Like I said, I am not an expert on education but I truly believe that one of the ways to create better teachers is by investing in them to develop teachers’ reading culture, writing culture and eventually a sharing culture.

Because, we need amazing teachers.
Empathetic teachers.
Rebel teachers.

However, many teachers in Nepal have not yet been ‘invested’ in a true sense.

And, not to just smear the whole blame on the government’s and policy makers’ faces, teachers, who whine all the time, need to stop making excuses. Because, khaaney mukh lai junga le chhekdaina, garna man laagey baahaana le rokdaina.

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(Pic: Sikshak mag)

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5 thoughts on “113. Investing on teachers?

  1. I couldn’t agree more. Reading in general (as opposed to “studying” for exams or teaching or something else) is just a good habit to develop anyway. And also agree with the blame game – its just too easy.

  2. Umes, I know you are a very smart person and I have tremendous respect for you. But what you just said made me respect you a LOT more today. Yes, it is not enough to say that our teachers don’t read without also knowing a few things about them. Many don’t have the money, access, incentive, reason, and inspiration to read. Many can do without reading beyond what they need to teach. Many do read. Many …. The lives of many are way too challenging, in spite of the money they may save. The world view of many is different from ours. Finally, there’s no need to judge everyone on the same scale. There is not even a need to define education and teaching and learning and professional development on our terms. What we need is to understand the world in its complexity, variability, messiness. If we can develop a more complex understanding, then we can devise better solutions– solutions that are not driven by judgment, parochial and self-centered view of education. We need to start doing what you just did. You first acknowledged the complexity of the situation, as well as your limited grasp of the issues, and then you offered your solution to the problem: “Like I said, I am not an expert on education but I truly believe that one of the ways to create better teachers is by investing in them to develop teachers’ reading culture, writing culture and eventually a sharing culture.” In particular, I like how you use the word “investment” without limiting it to money; the society needs to really invest in changing habits, behavior, culture. I also like it how you didn’t just make it sound like “oh, they need to read more poetry” (I’m a writer and fan of poetry, but, no, that won’t help teachers!)– instead you connect reading to writing and then sharing. There’s a lot of depth in your quick post. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Great reflection Umesh ji! I loved the way you challenged us to think differently. Investment on the human resources would differently make a significant impact in own life and their responders. Reading is our own investment which would create and shape our vision. Also, being a teacher is being a self-judging student!

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