I pen this article to commemorate International Teachers’ Day which falls today. Nothing is permanent in this world except for change. Throughout our lives, we face various changes. Most of the time, these appear as challenges and along with them come opportunities.
A handful of people recognises and adapts to these changes. They exploit opportunities and encounter challenges as taking the bull by the horns. They are considered “winners.”
The rest of the world resists change and considers it painful. They try to run away from it and lead mediocre lives. In my humble opinion, these are your childhood practices which nullify growth (even when you become an adult). These people suffer a lot in life and become losers.
Should you be fortunate, you join the “winners” group. In order to be in this group, your teachers beside your parents play a pivotal role in moulding you to be an achiever. They fundamentally change our perception about life and change our behaviour which ultimately becomes our attitude.
In essence, it is not knowledge or hard work that count but your attitude which makes a sound personality. Teachers inculcate knowledge, skills and attitudes in us and ensure we make them a habit.
While knowledge helps you to pass classroom examinations, it is attitude that facilitates to pass the trials and tribulations in real life. In order to do this, you should possess wisdom through knowledge acquired from teachers. Hence, the role of a teacher has to be considered as revered and noble. Teachers predict the destiny of students. They are instrumental in laying a solid foundation to students and offer professional services to provide a better future for them.
Teachers act as a “ladder” to make their students reach the top of their lives. Teachers burn like a “candle” to ensure their students’ lives are brightened. Teachers act as a “bridge” for students to cross the hurdles in life. Teachers act as an “anchor” in order for that students to depend on them. Teachers act as a “signpost” to provide directions to their students. In my humble opinion, sacrifice is synonymous to teachers.
They are committed, compassionate, dedicated, disciplined, value-oriented and determined in moulding their students with the ultimate goal of making their students supersede them. They carry out laborious tasks to make their students prosper in life. They make us “multi-talented individuals.” In essence, they are creators of our knowledgeable world.
On this International Teachers’ Day, let us salute our teachers who have made us reach the current and respected positions in society with their arduous tasks made to sculpt us as unique personalities, serving the society and our motherland.
May I kindly request the government to look into the possibilities of adequately remunerating them for their unstinted professional work as they draw an inadequate salary that does not compensate them in a meaningful manner.
We should not think of them only on International Teachers’ Day, but everyday when we wake up. We should include them in our prayers, asking God Almighty to shower blessings for their good health, success, happiness and long life. Words are scarce to express gratitude to our most respected teachers.
I am humbled, honoured and privileged to be an old boy of St. Joseph’s College, Colombo 10, in which I learnt lessons from great teachers as briefed in this article and I dedicate this piece of writing to them.
Let us strive to meet the challenges and opportunities in front of us and serve our motherland as teachers taught us in our hallowed educational institutions.
(The writer was the former Chairman/Editor-in-Chief of Blue & White Newsletter Committee and member of the elite club ‘Josephian Blue.’
He is a motivational and life management coach).