A Letter to my Teacher

Teacher,

From the day I had been admitted to my school, I learned to call you Sir / Madam, because this is a polite way of addressing a person of superior rank. You were not only a teacher, but a mentor who helped me and directed me in matters where I couldn’t reach a choice. But, as time passed, you seemed to lose your significance, and I lost the respect I had. I am sorry but this is true.

I believe that you are at the place you are, by chance, and not by choice and this hinders you to discharge your duties proficiently.

You indulged in practices which your students didn’t appreciate. You were disproportionate in treating your students, and this is not praised.

I still remember the day when a student asked you a question and you kicked him out of the class. After 10 minutes, the same question was asked by a girl, and she was replied with a warm smile, a respectful response. Why this dissimilarity? What do you expect from your students after this?

Sir, you considered taking a re test of the girl who lost 5 marks in her examination but refused to help the one who was failing by 1 mark. What reaction do you expect from us?

If a student is failing in your subject, it means he is unable to understand your lecture, or perhaps your subject is too mind-numbing for him, or maybe you are too boring for him. If he doesn’t like your appearance, that’s not your liability, but if he doesn’t like your approach, then you are surely at fault. You need to address his hitches. He needs your support.

Another thing I need to mention is your patience. You can’t hold it, you lose it fast. You get annoyed when I keep on asking the same question. The reason why I am asking the same thing time and again is that you couldn’t satisfy me with your previous answers. If you don’t know the answer, admit that you really don’t know. I never made a fun of you.

We respected you and still do, but as the years pass, these honorable mannerisms seem to disappear from us. When you walk along, we make rude and catty comments and perpetuate ridicule behind your back. But is that only we who are to be blamed?

I wonder how a student scoring 7 out of 20 in the first test, scores an aggregate of 93 out of 100 in the same subject. He could have scored a maximum of 87. The mathematics you taught me in primary school has been violated or maybe I was unable to perform addition.

Sir, your unfair attitude is slaughtering talent. That student couldn’t memorize the equation of the telephone cable and penned it on his desk in the examination hall. Does he justify being at rank 1? Certainly not, but he is still your pet student.

That student was unable to answer that 5 mark question and procured assistance from the student at the front. She cheated. Does she justify being ranked 1? Absolutely not, but still she is your favorite student.

You have not been able to recognize individuals and you never gave equivalent opportunities. You are definitely killing talent. You need to change.

You should be empathetic, able to share our feelings as if it were your own.

Your “willing to learn” nature can help you a lot. You can learn from your colleagues AND your students too. There is no harm in it.

There are many students, including me, who see a role model in you. Be a fine person for them.

I request you for these changes because what I learn from you, I will pass on the same to my students, and when my students appreciate my labors, I will appreciate yours.

Hope for the best between us.

Sincerely Yours.
Aasim Ashai

(The author is a columnist at JandK Now. This article was first published on 10 January, 2012.)

Disclaimer: This is an opinion piece. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the website)