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    Why a TEACHER in a government school is a PARENT in a private school

    Enrollment drive won’t serve any purpose unless the government employees, preferably in the education department own the schools; finally it is about a systemic reform not about creating a spectacle that this drive is

    Why a TEACHER in a government  school is a PARENT in a private school

    Over the past few weeks, the social media is flooded with posters and banners prepared by government school teachers asking parents to enroll their kids in the government schools. 

    The teachers are actively participating in the campaign to identify the out of school children and also motivate parents to enrol kids in government schools, in the kindergarten section.

    The village level campaign has been started as the enroll-ment in government schools has witnessed a downfall over the years, and also the government has failed to retain students in government schools during the transition from primary to middle and high school level.

    Over the past few weeks, the government school teachers are creating an impression that the government schools are getting ownership from society and parents are enrolling their kids in government schools.

    The teachers are portraying a rosy picture of government schools on social media to con-vince the parents to enroll their kids in schools. Slogans like free uniform, free textbooks, free education are seen everywhere on Facebook, twitter and other social media platforms and teach-ers expect that such slogans will bring revolution in the ailing government education sector.

    The teachers are trying their best to instil confidence among the parents to prefer government schools over private schools. 

    But such initiatives are unlikely to prove fruitful for the govern-ment as the teachers motivating other parents to own govern-ment schools have their own children in private schools.

    It is an old saying that charity begins at home. While launch-ing student enrollment drives in villages and towns they are seen waiting in long queues outside private schools to admit their kids in these institutions.

    All this sends out a clear message that the teachers them-selves don’t own these govern-ment schools and that is why they prefer private schools for their own kids.

    Anyone can question these teachers, how they can moti-vate anyone if they are not able to convince their conscience to prefer government school for their own kids. How can they influence other parents with the slogans of free textbooks, free uniforms and free education when they spend huge amounts on tuition fees and text books prescribed by private schools for their kids?

    Given my own experience as being associated with the edu-cation sector, it won’t be wrong to say that government school teachers do not trust the schools where they teach and earn their living as far as the education of their children is concerned. 

    Instead, their choice is the pri-vate schools. The government school teachers seem to believe in the ideology that they should earn from government schools and spend it on education of chil-dren in private schools.

    There are around 10780 gov-ernment schools in the Valley with an enrollment of over 6.50 lakh students. Despite having qualified teachers and drawing hefty salaries the government schools are considered to be meant for poor and underprivi-leged children. This ideology has been propagated by the govern-ment school teachers themselves because they have never owned these schools as parents. So, the question arises how they can ask anyone else to show own these schools.

    It is indeed a challenging situ-ation for the government school teachers as parents are ready to send their wards to private schools by paying monthly fees in thousands where teachers are getting about Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000 as monthly salaries.

    But surprisingly, the parents, including government school teachers are not willing to trust government schools where no fee is charged and teachers are employed at a monthly salary of Rs 40,000 to Rs 50,000.

    The government teachers lack confidence because they do not believe in their own education sector and are not confident of the competence of government school teachers employed in gov-ernment schools.

    Being active on social media and convincing other parents won’t make any success unless the government school teachers enroll their own kids in govern-ment schools.

    Let the government school teachers take a lead in discharg-ing their kids from private schools and enrolling them in government schools. Such a move will encourage others to believe and impose faith in government schools.Let the teachers remember that charity begins at home and instead of selling slogans, the teachers should move ahead with a belief that their own kids will be groomed better in the government education sector.

    Government education sector will excel only after a govern-ment teacher becomes a govern-ment school parent. Otherwise shouting slogans and selling ben-efits of schemes will not bring a 

    change in this sector. Hope the government wakes up to the real cause before it is too late. 

    And yes, what applies to the govern-ment teacher applies to the gov-ernment employees, preferably the officers.

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