Every year September 5 is celebrated as the teachers day to commemorate the role of teachers. It is actually observed on the birthday of Dr. Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan who was the first Vice President of India and highly respected teacher. Seminars and award distribution functions etc. are supposed to be organised on this special day to honour those teachers with good performances. On this day a student is given an opportunity to express his thankfulness to his teachers. But on ground such functions practically hardly happen in present times.
The role of teachers is undoubtedly matchless. A teacher guides a student to the right way of of living and teaches him the purpose of life. He takes a student from dark to light, from ignorance to knowledge and educates him by every possible means. The value and essence of guidance by a teacher is such that nothing in the world can equalise it. Being a good teacher is in itself a prestige for him. As education has now become one of the basic needs, we are indebted to our teachers who have taught us even a single word. We should salute those teachers who have taught us how to handle and grip a pencil, when we were beginners. If at present we at any level, we are because of those primary teachers who always provided a helping hand to us and held our hand firmly while climbing every step on the ladder of education. Looking from broader point of view, a teacher is not only one who is holding a job/ profession to teach the students formally but every such person who teaches even a single good thing to another is also a teacher. When it comes to the real meaning of a teacher, the profession is not a criteria. So teacher is not only one who teaches within the walls of a classroom but that person is also a teacher who makes you learn the ways of living. Celebration of teachers day brings all the teachers more close to professionalism, not by force which most often results counterproductive but by the means of motivation and appreciation. Once teachers with good performance are appreciated, the teachers with low performance also try their level best to bring their performance at par with those who succeed to make their teaching productive. So the purpose of observing teachers day is and should be to encourage the teachers to make their profession more result oriented and to make them feel happy with their job. On the teachers day those with good performance in the field of teaching are supposed to be conferred with different awards which enhance their motivation level and also awakes those who leave some loopholes in teaching. On this day students are also supposed to greet their teachers.Heads of schools are expected to offer appreciation certificates to the well performing teachers. The teachers day doesn’t mean that there is only one day spare for teachers but it infuses sense of respect for teachers among the students, which should never fade off from the student’s mind through out the year.
There is a great significance of teachers day. But the way it is being celebrated in present times is not sufficient. Excluding the big institutions like universities, colleges and some influential private institutions the day is not celebrated with full fervor in the institutions. Most of the government schools including elementary, and some secondary and higher secondary school don’t even celebrate the day at all. Every year school education department celebrates various spacial days such as plantation day, swachhta abhiyaan etc. for wich department formally issues instructions to observe them at the school level. Several activities are carried out on such special days in the schools. But it is very unfortunate that no such instructions are being give to school heads on teachers day. Neither are they intimated officially by higher quarters to observe the day prior to it’s arrival. However there are also no restrictions for teachers and heads of institutions to observe teachers day. Rather if they would celebrate it at their level, they would be applauded by higher ups. But It seems that the teachers and heads of institutions themselves have lost interest in celebrating such important events. This can also be guessed that may be some teachers avoid it for they would consider it’s celebration a sort of self praising. But one must know that the significance of teachers day is much beyond the praise and greetings to teachers. Real teachers have no thirst for praise. It is said, “a good deed is itself a reward”. There is no reward as good as self motivation. But once the good teacher is praised for his good performance he gets a recognition for his hardwork. At the same time a student learns the importance of a teacher. Respect and regard for a teacher is very important aspect of teacher-student relationship. Infusing the sense of respect for teachers is also a part of education for a student. Giving teachers a good honour depicts how important is, “what the teacher teaches” . That is value of teaching gets recognition once the teacher is respected by students. Hope that education department would make teachers’ day a practical reality in future and pay attention towards this important day.
( The author is a teacher @ J&K School Education Department. Views are his own)