Government College Teachers Seek Justice

Government college teachers must be well conversant and have deep knowledge in subjects. Photo source: The Daily Star
Government college teachers must be well conversant and have deep knowledge in subjects. Photo source: The Daily Star
Masum Billah
Written by Masum Billah

As a regular reader of English newspapers, I have gone through the lengthy thought-provoking and valuable writing of an unknown assistant professor of a government college under the heading government college teachers seek justice which appeared in the Bangladesh Observe of its twenty-fourth issue of July 2004. As I used to be in the profession of teaching and still I am working in this sector in BRAC which deals with the expansion, improvement and problems of teaching, any issue related to teaching titillates me to focus some light on this phenomenon. 

Education boasts to be the largest cadre in the civil service with 12 000 teachers. Again it is true that it is the neglected cadre among all the twenty-nine cadres. We have miserably failed to understand and implement that proper teaching, tutoring and education holds the solutions to hundreds of problems of the country. Proper education makes our future generation morally elevated. When it is ensured the nation can expect better and honest service from them. If we can create a congenial atmosphere in our educational institution’s students would be attracted to come to the class remaining away from unsociable and illegal activities in the society which will contribute to establishing a peaceful society. A better and well-planned education system and examination can be a good indicator to enter into the next tier of education.

Still, anomalies lie in the government college teachers in respect of giving selection grade, promotion, distribution of classes and number of teachers comparing to the students. The problems of teachers must be communicated to the higher or highest authorities through the Teacher’s Association. Presently there are two teachers association namely the BCS General Education Association and the Bangladesh Civil Service Education Association. The writer wants to say that the first one is NO party and the second one also does not represent real teachers organisation. In fact, many associations are formed in our country but these hardly represent for which they are meant and formed. Teacher’s Associations must be formed with real teachers with leadership qualities. Only leaders or only teachers will hardly represent the teacher’s community. Teachers should elect and select that kind of teachers irrespective of their political colours.

I used to serve in Bangladesh Cadet College. The nature of job and service rules of cadet colleges are different from civil colleges and institutions. Cadet college teachers don’t have any association to represent them. Though I established the Ex-cadet College Teachers’ Association after leaving the job by the active cooperation of my colleagues it now goes into hibernation as many of the colleagues who showed interest and enthusiasm at the beginning do not show any interest. Cadet colleges are run by the Adjutant General’s branch of Army Headquarters. Adjutant General remains busy with so many military affairs.

Necessarily he does not get enough time to concentrate on cadet college affairs. Hence the problems of the teachers remain unknown to him. Establishing Teacher’s Organisation is also not possible under the defence rule. To update the affairs of cadet colleges there holds a council meeting twice a year where AG and other high military and civil officers remain present. It is interesting enough there is no teacher representative in the council. On behalf of teachers, only the principal remains present. Armed forces principals with some possible exceptions are not aware of the real problems of the teachers. Civil principals are not courageous enough or sincere enough to change anything for the teachers. In this kind of meeting teachers belonging to all categories (lecturers, assistant professors, associate professors) must be present. for the betterment and bringing novelty in cadet college. I submitted some proposals in a council meeting through the then principal of my college who was from the Armed Forces but very sympathetic and considerate towards teachers’ interest and facilities. the principal was intelligent, active and courageous enough. Even then he failed to submit my proposals before the high officials of the ministry of defence.

I sincerely believe and have seen that cadet colleges contribute a great deal to the field of education in our country. So cadet college service must be made suitable to keep pace with the trend of the twenty-first century. I left cadet college several years back still feel for the teaching community and I believe a real teacher can contribute a great deal to build up a nation really. Cadet college teachers must not be confined within the four walls of the college.

They must be sent to different organizations and places to receive training so that they can develop their professional skills as well as expose themselves to the recent happenings of the world as cadets are the brilliant sons of the soil. To teach these students teachers must have well prepared and much more out knowledge. I saw there are some brilliant teachers in cadet colleges whereas there are some teachers who don’t match with the institution to impart knowledge to the brighter section of students of the country. Cadet college teachers are to remain busy only with the internal affairs of the college which sometimes seem monotonous to them. They sometimes indulge in speaking ill of others. To broaden their mind they must have various sorts of training.

Government college teachers must be well conversant and have deep knowledge in subjects. Government college teachers must conduct research and receive higher education both at home and abroad. Regular promotion on the basis of merit, length of service, competitive examination, satisfactory service and ACR. The uniform rule must be maintained in respect of promotion, posting and giving selection grade. No touch of corruption and nepotism must be accommodated here. Everybody must be under rules and regulations in the greater interest of the nation. The custodians of law must be aware of these facts.

Government comes and goes. Every government is to remain busy with so many chronic problems of the country. Though education is a vital sector of the country, the government of our country is to remain busy with poverty alleviation. Reasonable Teachers Organization comprised of real teachers with leadership qualities can sort out the problems of the education sector and find sustainable solutions by convincing the government. Teachers must do something for the welfare of the students and education not for themselves only. Only individual gains and interests must not be harboured. Everything should be done in the greater interest of education and the nation.

About the author

Masum Billah

Masum Billah

Masum Billah works as an Education Expert in the BRAC Education Program, BRAC, and President of the English Teachers' Association of Bangladesh (ETAB), Dhaka, Bangladesh.

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