Teach­ing pro­fes­sion

Bhutan Times - - Editorial -

Teach­ing is al­ways re­garded as a no­ble pro­fes­sion in our Bhutanese so­ci­ety and the teach­ers oc­cupy a spe­cial place in our coun­try. The teach­ers play a spe­cial role in shap­ing the fu­ture cit­i­zens of our coun­try. The re­spon­si­bil­ity of be­ing a teacher seems too huge as a slight fail­ure in their pro­fes­sion would cost huge to the whole na­tion.

With the in­tro­duc­tion of the school ed­u­ca­tion in Bhutan in late 50’s, teach­ers were hired from In­dia and the teacher train­ing in­sti­tutes was es­tab­lished to train na­tional teach­ers. De­spite the re­mote­ness, the rugged ter­rains and lack of in­fra­struc­tures in the schools the teach­ers had served the na­tion at their best. They have been given the recog­ni­tion from the high­est author­ity where teach­ers re­ceived the Na­tional Or­der of Merit dur­ing the Na­tional Day cel­e­bra­tions.

Rec­og­niz­ing the im­por­tance of the teach­ers, the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion has al­ways given much im­por­tance to the train­ing of the teach­ers and pro­vided in coun­try and ex- coun­tries train­ings in coun­tries like Canada and Aus­tralia. Fur­ther to make the teach­ers more at­tracted to teach­ing pro­fes­sion the Min­istry had even en­cour­aged dis­tance ed­u­ca­tion for the school teach­ers and will be start­ing the Mas­ters pro­gram soon.

How­ever all seems not well with the teach­ing pro­fes­sion as there was a hue and cry over the high at­tri­tion rate for the teach­ers last year. Ac­cord­ing to the an­nual ed­u­ca­tion sta­tis­tics 2017, 365 teach­ers have left the teach­ing pro­fes­sion to the high­est teacher at­tri­tion since 2008. About 2,346 teach­ers from the pub­lic schools have left the pro­fes­sion. About 1,467 have vol­un­tary re­signed and 305 teach­ers have su­per­an­nu­ated, 282 teach­ers ei­ther died or were ter­mi­nated, 251 left af­ter the ex­piry of the con­tract and 40 teach­ers left on com­pul­sory re­tire­ment.

As said by the Prime Min­is­ter in the an­nual ed­u­ca­tion con­fer­ence in Pang­bang last year, ev­ery child is pre­cious and our chil­dren are now even more pre­cious as our pop­u­la­tion is tiny and fam­ily size is shrink­ing rapidly. He also as­serted to in­vest what­ever re­sources are re­quired to nur­ture our pre­cious chil­dren.

As the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion is work­ing to­wards in re­solv­ing the is­sues at hand and to ex­plore the pos­si­bil­i­ties to re­tain our good teach­ers for fu­ture of our chil­dren, we see a ray of hope at the end of the tun­nel for the teach­ing pro­fes­sion­als. The teach­ing pro­fes­sion in Bhutan needs a closer scru­tiny as the teach­ers are the back­bone of the na­tion. The teach­ers need to be pro­fes­sion­ally equipped to build our fu­ture gen­er­a­tions. The min­istry must ex­plore ways to re­tain them and sup­port the no­ble pro­fes­sion as the ini­tia­tive will go long way in build­ing the fu­ture of our coun­try.

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