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No celebration to mark World Teachers Day

Oct 5: World Teachers Day is being celebrated across globe today (October 5), by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) that marked this day some 41 years ago. The day defines their responsibilities and asserts their rights. Unfortunately, however, in our country and especially in the city, the day is not being celebrated officially. In fact, the education department remains ignorant that today is World Teachers Day.

As such, no celebrations like organising programmes or seminar have been held in the city. If anything, teachers have been always asked by the authorities to visit to educational institutions and interact with teachers, parents and students.

"No official notification has been issued from the government department for holding the day. It could be because of Ramazan," said Rafiq Siddiqui, director of colleges. Besides government functions, no private school or college organisations have arranged programmes for this day.

This ignorance on the part of education departments, both private and government, shows how concerned the authorities are about maintaining the status of teachers and recognising their importance.

Not altogether surprising was the fact that no teacher's organisation in the city issued any statement taking note of the World Teachers Day. Unlike Fathers Day, Mothers Day or Valentine's Day, which are commercial propositions, there have been no newspaper advertisements, not even lip service in this case.

This changing trend where commercialisation has dominated educational institutions has given rise to many questions: for example, are respect, honour and values diminishing in our society?

Siddiqui, emphatically said that focus should be on the teaching conditions and teachers should raise their voice in this regard. Quality education for all cannot be achieved without improving the working conditions first.

The co-operative teachers, who were laid off from the colleges, after the appointment of interns under the prime minister programme, were critical of the situation.

"The day provides the perfect opportunity for teachers unions and education supporters to lobby their governments to release the necessary financial and human resources for quality education for all," said Kunwal an affected teacher of Government College Landhi, Industrial Area.

She also said that equal rights for women teachers are overlooked. Teachers fail to receive proper training on issues such as protecting themselves from growing violence in educational institutions. Besides, no health care policy has been announced for teachers to date.

She argued that it was because people have no respect for teachers, which is why no one wants to celebrate or acknowledge the day. The News

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