Sun.Star Baguio

Not everyone can teach

- Jefferson Bal-iyang

THE CURRENT pandemic has left an indelible mark on all of us in a variety of ways. As a teacher, what I can point to as a silver lining from the most severe worldwide public health crisis of our lifetime, is the greater respect teachers receive from people.

In the past, teachers were scorned and held in contempt for being teachers. Yet in this pandemic, we finally saw the value they possess and carry. Many parents who are suddenly tasked with assisting their children in home-schooling, while working full-time jobs at the same time, realize how difficult teachers’ jobs are and how great teachers’ sacrifices are for the sake of every learner. The need and call for face to face instructio­n prove that not everyone can teach. The global health crisis has shown that you can’t replace teachers in the classroom with remote education. Parents have started to notice how hard it is to educate a student. It opened many parents’ eyes to the essential role teacher’s play in our children’s lives. Ironically, the scorn and contempt that teachers receive regularly are now thrown back at those who devalue our education frontliner­s.

Without question, teachers more than deserve the newfound appreciati­on being shown to them. If we come to think of it, teacher aren't very well trained in the work they are required to do such as how to teach using online platforms, how to create digital content and lessons for their students, etc., but they are doing their best because they do not want their students to be at a loss just because teachers are in uncharted territory. Bracing for herculean challenges in adjusting to teaching students remotely, teachers had to learn so much in so little time. All of these while also needing to personally assess students, communicat­e with parents, and take care of their own families too.

The new demands from teachers put by remote teaching in curriculum reconstruc­tion and teaching content designs have all added to the mounting stress being experience­d by teachers. Undeniably, the role of the teacher has incredibly changed in the new normal. As the pandemic unfolds and the days of distance learning turn to months, teachers face a steep learning curve every single day. In our country with high inequality and spotty connectivi­ty, teachers are finding innovative ways to reach the millions of students shut out of classrooms.

But even with so much at stake in this crisis, experience would tell us our teachers will always endeavor to carry through their obligation­s towards teaching no matter the circumstan­ce.

Attitude change and the way we perceive teachers would help them gain confidence in order to succeed in their efforts with a positive vibe. If we continue to give them our full support, there is no doubt we will rise above this— both the pandemic and its educationa­l side effects.

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