Teachers' Travails

September 27, 2013

I know that the Teacher’s Day celebration is over. Then what makes me write on a teacher? This question has even troubled me. I being a teacher, how impartial will I be in writing? Wouldn’t I be partial in my views? Would I be able to write my mind sincerely?

I don’t have that fear since I am writing this article not for an occasion. Normally, every year, on September 5th, the day which is dedicated for teachers, we remember teachers and we don’t forget to wish them, write ‘good’ about them, send bouquets to them and if possible make speeches on their achievements. The day passes and it is all over. You wait for another year for the celebration. The rest of the days of the year the teacher and his/her honest work is never remembered.

The teacher, may teaching at the primary level, high school level or at the college level has a special responsibility entrusted upon her. Whether she likes it or not is a different issue altogether. The modern world demands from the teacher not just the bookish knowledge to be imparted to the students. He/she has a special responsibility of moulding the personality of the students under his/her care. Now we might raise our brow and grunt, ‘what’s great about it?’  You are right! What’s great about it? But no sooner we find a student uncivilised than ask from which institution is he and who are his teachers? Why do you ask this question if there isn’t anything great about the responsibility of the teacher of moulding the personality of a student? Howzzzzz that???

In every social gathering if the parents have time to discuss they discuss about education, the education system, the institutions, the teachers, the capitation fee etc. One of the frequently discussed questions is about the qualification and the capacity of the teachers. As all the fingers of the palm are not the same so the teachers, their capacity, their qualification also may not be the same. But still there will be an exception to poor teachers as we have poor students. Now here is a googly. Who are the teachers? They are from among us. Who becomes a teacher? This is a million dollar question.

In the olden days, as it was with the religious life, teacher’s profession too was a divine call. Everyone did not muster the courage to respond to that call. But now the things have come down to such a level that every Tom Dick and Harry is a teacher. Why so? Is it because teacher’s job is very lucrative? No. It is because “if you are no where you are at least here” attitude. The bright children of ours take up professional courses. There is a race for such courses. Everyone’s child should be a doctor or an engineer. No one is interested in pure science or humanities. A commerce student will start calculating the interest the moment he joins the course. Teacher’s profession is a big joke for them. Some mediocre or poor students, who cannot afford to think of these professional courses, and who cannot pursue the regular education get a correspondent degree and opt for teacher’s profession. Some do very well, some manage and some miserably fail. To become a teacher you require language and good communicative skills. Those who are good at it they get into the professional courses were their talent goes waste. Tell me now how can we get good teachers? Should we import them from Mars? Howzzz that????

UGC pays the teacher very well. State Government also pays good. But there are thousands of teachers whose jobs are not approved and are working for meagre salaries. Some of the teachers in some private institutions are paid so low that they find it difficult to manage their family. A daily wage earner earns twice, sometimes, thrice the more than what teacher earns. It is not that those schools which have employed them cannot pay a fair salary taken into consideration the capitation fee they receive from the students. But the attitude is “It’s our hard earned money”. One would work sincerely and effectively if he is paid well. If not we will have to bear with the poor teachers. Howzzz that???

We read in the media the misbehaviour of the teachers. It is not a general phenomenon. Teacher is not a class. He is an individual. As you don’t blame every father or a mother if one father or mother misbehaves so one can’t blame every teacher for the mistake one single teacher commits. Teacher is a human being. But it is not a justification for his misbehaviour. But generalising the mistake of one teacher and weighing every teacher on the same scale would lead to an aberration. Morally defeated teacher cannot function as an effective teacher. The teacher needs public support and not the sympathy. He needs public support because he is teaching our children and moulding their personality. So his dignity should be upheld and he/she should be respected not only on teacher’s day but every day should be a teacher’s day. Howzzzz that????


Vincy, Pamboor Archives: 



By Vincent Alva (Vincy, Pamboor)
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Comment on this article

  • Ronald D, Udupi

    Mon, Oct 07 2013

    Yes you are right! They are paid little in private schools for rich services! There is a big mental gap between aided and unaided teachers sharing the same staff room! unaided with quarter of salary are much better at job often! Good article which raises more questions than answers!! Good and standard remuneration is a must for all teachers to get pampered in order to deliver goods!!

  • Latha, Padubelle/Salalah Oman

    Wed, Oct 02 2013

    Very good article Incha....As teaching is a profession, it reminds us to respect and uphold the dignity of this beautiful profession.

  • CGS, Mangalore

    Wed, Oct 02 2013

    Very interesting write up by Vincy
    Pamboor,who is a great Professor loved and respected by his students and friends.Congrats & All the Best!

  • Dr.clarence miranda, Kirem

    Wed, Oct 02 2013

    Dear vincent,
    A very nice and thought provoking article.Today teachers do such a lot for the children and for the institution.However many fail to understand and appreciate this.
    What disturbs is poor salaries paid to the teachers particularly in the private schools.
    Another issue is your article must be compulsorily sent to the concernd ministers and to the Managers of the educational institutions.
    I am of the opinion that those who do not treat the teachers well they will be treated the same way in the Last judgement day.

  • Dr. jayaram shettigar, cherkady

    Tue, Oct 01 2013

    your article is thought provoking....
    need to think about the role of teacher in Indian society. he/she is a teacher not only in the school but also in the society,where one should maintain his/her teacher-hood. is it possible for the teacher who have been paid a meager salary in unaided institution. some where one have make compromise with his/her profession.........

  • Prakash Baretto, Kundapura/Dubai

    Tue, Oct 01 2013

    Nice article..Mr. Alva.

  • cyril mathias, udupi

    Tue, Oct 01 2013

    Teaching is a noble profession and their impact is indelibe.Teachers affect eternity.Let the well paid teachers teach only,and not indulge in politics and money laundering.May the low paid teachers get their proper dues.The article mirrors the sad plight of teachers.

  • vincent d souza, Hospet

    Tue, Oct 01 2013

    Sir, you have really highlighted the problem of, Highly educated but poorly paid teacher of present day education system. Buildings class rooms, computers, canteens,etc does not make an excellent education institution, it is the teacher who give life to the institution and it the student who bring glory to the institution. Let the public know that in the general education system a teacher is paid much below an ordinary mason. Since 3 decades all the successive governments destroyed the education system from KG to PG.How you can expect quality education from a poorly paid permanently temporary teacher.The public shouid also demand Right to Quality education. which will not come for a paltry salary.

  • Jacintha, kemmannu/ Mumbai

    Tue, Oct 01 2013

    Dear Sir, you provided food for thought. Indeed a teacher can build or break, make or mar the future of a student under his/her care. We salute our teachers who have directed us in the right path. Thanks for being one.

  • Rita, Mangalore

    Tue, Oct 01 2013

    Dear Sir.
    Thought provoking article. I salute all my teachers..
    Continue the good work as a teacher..God bless you dear Sir


  • Catherine, US/ Managalore

    Mon, Sep 30 2013

    Great article Prof. Vincent. It is true that teachers have “special responsibility of molding the personality of the students under his/her care.” I agree with you that the society tend to demote Teaching occupation by not compensating enough. For those parents, who only think their children’s career in engineering and doctors, give some thoughts about teaching. It is indeed a divine call!

  • Judith Mendonca, Pamboor / Bahrain

    Mon, Sep 30 2013

    Good artilcle Vincy. You & Saritha are the good role models to others. It is a very dedicated job needs lots of knowledge & patience specially in this modern world. All the best.

  • Wilma, Udupi

    Sun, Sep 29 2013

    Very good article Sir Alva.God bless.

  • valerian, Padubelle / dubai

    Sun, Sep 29 2013

    Good article, you have given true meaning of a teacher. Whatever we are today, it is just because of our sincere teachers. Hope present teaching standards and teachers are keen to mould the student for a better future.
    Any way Vincy keep writing, your articles are truly eye opening to the society.

  • geoffrey, hat hill

    Sun, Sep 29 2013

    No doubt like mentioned in the article, the key to success of an educational system is to attract teaching talent by offering competitive remuneration. But it shouldn’t stop at recruitment stage, like any other profession, their annual salary increment should be linked with the performance and this measure should automatically stimulate continual updating on the subject by a teacher.

  • Avil Dalmeida, Moodubelle/Dubai

    Sun, Sep 29 2013

    Nice article from Mr. Vincy about teachers..I salute all my teachers.
    All the best.

  • Fr.Cyprian Capuchin, Mangalore

    Sun, Sep 29 2013

    Good Article.Congratulations to Vincy. Let us appreciate the good work done by our teachers to mould our personality and let us try to improve their standard of living by giving them fair renumeration at least in our Instituions and doing justice always.

  • Gretta Aranha, Inna/Bbay/Sharjah

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Dear Sir,
    Belated Wishes...Nice article sir, I was your student at Pompei college Batch 1994-97. As a sculpture carves a beautiful statue out of a stone Teachers are the one who guide and teach the students for being wonderful human beings.I wholeheartedly thank you for being a wonderful teacher. May God bless you.

  • Suresh, Mangalore

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    The basic problem of the present day teachers is the wrong information given to the students during the lectures. The author who prides himself being a teacher says "As all the fingers of the palm are not the same so the teachers", this is one example of wrong teaching, palm is part of the hand and so also are the fingers. There are a large number of teachers moulding students with similar wrong information, especially when it comes to religion.

  • Thomas Saldanha, Bangalore/Dubai

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Very well written Prof. Alva. We do have a shortage of highly skilled teachers today for reasons stated above. It is a collective responsibility of the society and the government to ensure that this profession attracts all those who are good at communication skills and bear a good moral character. As we all know, money is the greatest motivator sadly, and that is where the talent is headed to.

  • Remous Dsouza, padubelle

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    good article by vincent alva. school or college is like a workshop. where quality machines produced and sell it to market. if we produce good quality graduates it will be helpfull to build up good society and strong nation.everything depends on a good teacher.

  • linet noronha, mumbai

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Good article from Mr. Vincy abt teachers..I salute all my teachers..
    Continue the good work as a teacher..God bless

  • Dony, Katapady

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Your article is very true. In India we have many such blunders where certain occupation do not have any proper value or remuneration. Overall India is a good example of mismanagement.What you have written is again an example of this mismanagement. The society & industry wants good students as professionals, but who will produce such persons.I strongly believe the teachers play a major role in producing such characters. If you don't value teaching profession we will fail to develop this country.
    Keep penning such good articles, so that there will some improvement over the time

  • Agnel , Pamboor

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Nice one Vincy."generalising the mistake of one teacher and weighing every teacher on the same scale would lead to an aberration" Really very true not in just this but every matter of life.
    "Student like me may come thousand in a life of teacher.... but i will get only a few Teachers.. who really put thier best to shape up my carrier... Thanks to all my teachers... for thier effert... May God bless them with all the good things!!!!

  • Naveen mendonca, Pamboor/Bahrain

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Nice article........Vincy.

  • Peter, Bolkunje/Mangalore

    Sat, Sep 28 2013

    Enlightening article. Comparing a teacher's salary to a daily labourer is a little too much. The points raised by Teacher Vincy can all be rebuffed pony by point. I have a great respect for all the teachers of old. It was a vocation then. Not anymore. I am sure Vincy clever as he is got the point.

  • Winny, Udupi/Dubai

    Fri, Sep 27 2013

    Hi Vincy,indeed a thought provoking article.
    According to me no one can forget his/her teacher from primary to University till the end of their life,because Teachers are the one's who mould their life in every stage.
    We only wish & pray for all you teachers that at least you people who are leading us to light may treated seperately in fact with more respect,gratitude & reward by every person,institutions & above all by the Govt.And it will surely happen.
    With this hope you all teachers continue "Leading people towards light"

  • Hilda d silva, kallianpur

    Fri, Sep 27 2013

    good article Alva,Continue the good work-Hilda Madam

  • santhosh noronha, pamboor/b'lore

    Fri, Sep 27 2013

    Hi Vincy Bhat, thought provoking article...regards.

  • John DSouza, Mangalore

    Fri, Sep 27 2013

    Dear Vincy Sir, Happy Teachers’ Day
    Your feelings and opinion about teacher really is hurting and the below was my comment on teachers’ day.

    Your respect to and good feelings about teachers, is really appreciable.
    Now the situation has changed due to fast, dynamic and uncertain life style.
    Teaching is being considered merely as a life earning profession.
    The students think that they (teachers) do job just for fees, no relation and attention.
    Private tuition has become fashion and teaching in school is of standard type, due to diminishing respect and increasing students.
    Mentors have been respected more, as they are the career builders.

    Teaching is a powerful weapon which has the capacity to create a strong, stable and peaceful society.
    And in the meantime, bad teaching (wrong direction) can lead to dangerous and destructive actions. Happy Teachers’ Day

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