Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, October 16th, 2019

Celebrating Teacher’s Day

October 5th marks Teacher’s Day in Afghanistan, which has been celebrated by Afghan students across the country. A number of school teachers, educational center instructors, and university lecturers were presented gifts and flowers by their students. Some celebrated the day with cakes.
In Afghanistan, school students – all primary, secondary, and high school levels – prepare gifts for their teachers and children ask their families to pay them for the gifts. There is emotional connection between students and teachers.
Teacher’s Day, which is celebrated once a year, is inspiring for Afghan teachers. They feel hopeful and believe that their students pay respect to them when Teacher’s Day is celebrated.
However, it should be noted that teachers in Afghanistan live a miserable life, and they are not paid decently despite their dawn-to-dusk struggles. Teachers have very busy life in Afghanistan and make great efforts to educate the younger generation. They work really hard with devotion and moral responsibility to equip Afghan boys and girls with knowledge so that Afghanistan could make progress. But they encounter a myriad of challenges. First, as it was mentioned, teachers are not paid well. I remember vividly when in a remote area of a distant province, where teachers were lacking, two teachers had to teach and paid the salary of one teacher. It is really hard for teachers to run their life in a normal way. It is believed that if teachers are not paid decently, they are most likely to feel less responsibility and may not pay enough heed to their students. Moreover, when they encounter more economic challenges, they will lose their focus in the class and not prepare well for teaching. Meanwhile, they will be easily tempted to adopt selective approach towards their students by simply being invited for a lunch or dinner.
Second, a number of students do not respect teachers well. I remember when some students insulted teachers and even were ready to clash them physically. Even some university students were treating their lecturers very rudely.
On the other hand, some teachers and university lecturers, mainly in government universities, treat their students unfairly. Some lecturers in reputable universities grade their students in a very biased way.
Sorry to say, some university lecturers do not deserve the position of teaching. They teach their students the way they themselves were taught about decades ago and the same chapters they learnt. They do not bother themselves to upgrade their methods or adapt their teaching materials according to the need of time. Some lecturers are believed to have occupied the posts of lecturers through political affiliation. Few years back, some lecturers refused to be retired despite reaching retirement age just to have their salary. Worst of all, the involvement of some university lecturers in moral corruption has been cited and reported on several occasions. Such teachers or lecturers blacken the names and reputations of teachers in the society.
Teachers have to carry out their duties with moral responsibility and respect their students. In other words, their responsibility is not only to simply teach some formulas, but also the way of living and have to be role model for their students in all aspects of their life. Teachers are considered as spiritual father in Afghanistan’s culture and should treat their students like their children. If teacher promote their capacity and knowledge and teach students in satisfactory way, they will be always respected and admired by them.
Both the role and responsibility of teachers are highly critical. They have to fulfill their responsibilities and play their roles in the best possible way. Teachers are the builder of a society and nation. Afghan people liken teachers to candle, which is burnt to light around. Teachers should also work selflessly to enlighten a nation and society. They have moral and spiritual role to guide the society to the right way and shoulder the responsibility of divine prophets. With this in mind, teachers have to first equip themselves with the arm of knowledge and expertise and purify themselves so that they could guide the younger generation.
What is very important is that teachers, mainly in Afghanistan, should avoid spreading radical ideas. They should think in a moderate way and teach their students religious tolerance. Teachers should understand that the way of their thinking and behaving will impact their students’ life.
The government should seek to increase the salary of teachers so that they could overcome their economic challenges and live a better life. Meanwhile, this is the responsibility of students to treat their teachers and lecturers with respect so that they are supported mentally and emotionally.