September 05, 2011

You "Mean" Teachers...

When I was in 2nd standard, I had a nexus with 2-3 kids; we used to sit close to each other during tests  and cheat from each other. As the time went on, I became better and better as a student but my cheating powers kept on diminishing. In fact, I became so bad in copying, that I have been caught 'cheating' even when I wasn't! And as one can imagine, a lot of my friends have also suffered due to this 'inability' of mine. Sometimes, they used to feel guilty that I was caught helping them cheat (but invigilator always thought it was me  :-/) while other times they would make me feel guilty saying they failed only because I couldn't help them cheat (:O).

Anyways, now that you know I am a path3tic cheater, we can move on to the actual topic for today, shall we!!

Last year, on our Teachers' Day I wrote a post about the teachers I have encountered in my life. I didn't tell you about my social science teacher in 3rd standard. After 2nd class, we got reshuffled in different sections and hence my nexus of cheaters was broken. So, now I was alone in this big cruel world of cheating (believe me this post is not about cheating!). I had never cheated alone, so it was bound to hit back. So, in a simple Social Science test, instead of learning, I preferred to write the answers at the same place of test notebook where I was supposed to give the test. The next day teacher caught me (again with my bad luck with cheating, it wasn't cheating that made her caught me) and then I was beaten with wood stick; so badly that my left ankle was bruised for 2 days.

As I grew up I got better in studies. I being an innocent child, used to think that the teacher by beating me, had changed my life, since I was never inclined to cheat in exams ever again. It's only in the last few years that I have realized that I am what I am NOT because of that stupid incident but because of the good things that happened to me later and I would have remained the same sans that incident.

And that's the whole point of writing this post. I am sure you would have been beaten by teachers as well. But today, think about how many times it was justified. I mean yes, I deserved punishment sometimes (I once tried to copy my teacher's signature on some 'late' work which in fact she was still to check, so I got slapped). But other times it was just plain cruelty (keeping the hands up for 1.5 hours in 4th standard, causing me to cry in pain for the whole next period, just because I didn't bring a freaking notebook).

I won't say that students should be given a free run, some form of restraint is definitely necessary (seeing the new generation and their behavior I think it is even compulsory). But I don't think kids in lower standards deserve such treatment. You must have heard horror stories of how the students got fractured or went into coma, or even died because of cruelty from their teachers. Well, believe me a lot of these incidents go unreported (because kids, like me, think that it was 'their fault'). I have experienced teachers punishing students by making the issues too personal (they won't teach until student X gets out of class).

I am not writing this to bash the teachers. I really respect some of the teachers that taught me, and I know even if they punished me it was for my own good (no, Not that 3rd standard teacher; she once slapped me because I entered her class 10 seconds after her). But they commanded so much respect that thought of letting them down was the biggest motivator for me.

Govt. and courts are doing there bit in making this physical punishment a crime. I hope we as a society also wake up and take notice of this issue. Here is wishing for better disciplined but pain free future for the small kids studying in schools right now (including my little brother).

And for my 3rd grade teacher, Mam I dedicate this to you...

Happy Teachers Day everyone!