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Changing time and values

(Educating for GNH - a student posing for me)
This afternoon, I happened to meet a friend of mine who teaches at a school in town. Since it has been sometime, we were trying to catch up what’s happening, and chatting on various subjects ranging from politics to jobs to inflation to relationships.

I was asking how he likes teaching because I didn’t hear him mention teaching as something he always wanted to do back then. But he said he enjoys it. He likes the idea that he is educating children some children. At the end of the day it is satisfaction he gets, which matters. This is good. But I was unprepared with what was coming next. He said students’ attitudes have changed over the years.

“Some students openly go against and argue with teachers. Principal does not care about teachers. Students barely notice their teachers,” my friend continued. “Some students openly refuse to do project and home works.”

I thought he wanted to restore corporal punishment to its former glory. We were terrified of teachers because of that. And because of that the gap between the teachers and students kept on widening. Those days we were scared as hell to even ask our teachers some questions fearing they might cane us for not understanding the subject which he/she taught in the class. But discipline was much better, if you may call it that.

“Well, you could call their parents and tell them what’s happening,” I said.

“How many meetings have we conducted? All useless. Parents come only because they have no choice. They hardly care, I am sure.”

“Then, threaten these students – say you will give them zero on the project. They will listen then.”

“Yes we do … and these students say ‘yes’ So what can we do?”

Yes. What can we do?  These days our children are least bothered of failing a class. Their parents don’t mind. It all boils down to family values. Today in urban town and cities, parents are too busy to spend time with their children. And as long as their children go to school and come back home, parents are okay. It is not what parents feed their children through their mouths that matters, but the values that they instill in children that counts. Why do we have some youth into drugs and substance abuse? Why are some youths in the streets forming gangs? Why are some of them in towns breaking people’s shops and cars?   

One does not have to go very far to trace the source of all these.

Comments

  1. Yes, all this in contradiction to happiness... what next?

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  3. I value your comments here.Parenting is not something else here...Tis a very big thing.Teachers aren't a whip master as used to be. We teach values and ethics in and outside the classroom but it all depends on how they are brought up. Being a teacher is not always easy. Be a teacher and you will get to find what it really means to be a teacher Sogyel.. No hard feelings though..

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  5. Dear Sogyel
    i would sense here if there is any sense in it to be sensed. The age old system of education is no longer thriving in any of the schools in Bhutan. Today syllabus has changed a lot.New curriculum has come up.Rote learning no longer exists...Not my feelings but facts here...

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  6. The article "Changing time and Values" is of much interest to me as I being a teacher by profession. And I dearly value comments in the ensuing paragraphs.But I am little skeptical with what visionary Sogyel had to share with all of us. I would not like to believe in old styles of teaching being followed in many of the schools. Having travelled across the remotely flung schools to assess the implementation of new curriculum, it is of greater joy to share that the far flung schools are doing better than any of of the urban schools. But they do not have old system in the place. They are thriving with so many activities based on new system. And our children are happy.

    I feel our friend Sogyel perhaps must have visited schools six years ago.
    You might need to visit again to find out what our teachers are doing and how they are doing despite limited resources and facilities.

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