The doldrums in the education sector has contributed to thriving private coaching in the country ranging from the city of  Dhaka to the remotest part of the country. It is not reasonable to expect that all the teachers of this age will deal with everything like the teachers of an earlier age. It is also not reasonable to see what most of the teachers are doing .now -a-days. Students are compelled to come to them to receive private coaching otherwise they will not pass or obtain the expected marks. Again, if any student reads with a particular teacher other teachers of that subject look at the student with frowned eye and a silent competition or clash exists among the teachers due to this private coaching. This unhealthy competition leads the students to shed respect for the teachers and make the teaching profession a commercial one. It is a common complaint that teachers don’t teach properly in the class just to invite the students to come to them to have private teaching.

These pertinent situations raise the question of whether private coaching will continue or not. Our neighbouring country India has understood the situation and has banned private coaching. How can we address the situation without hampering the academic affairs as well as maintaining the interest of the teachers? We must not let the situation go as it is now in the greater interest of the nation. The present-day teachers must need money to face the present market price as well as to meet up their other demands of the present day which claim a lot of money. Not only that a teacher should not live a below standard life than his/her neighbouring and equivalent colleagues serving in other departments. If things go like this teaching profession will not see brilliant students which will be another flaw in this sector and ultimately the country will be intellectually desert. Of course, the country has already started to experience this situation Things are changing very slowly in the education sector. We should not allow it to happen as education is the determinant factor of everything. How could we do it?

1. To determine the progress of the student’s various examinations are held in a school or college. Teachers get tired and become boring to examine the scripts but no remuneration is given to the teachers. Necessarily they will not show interest in this work. I suggest the authorities concerned to introduce a reasonable amount of remuneration so that teachers become financially befitted and get interested to examine the scripts. Due to the absence of some remuneration teachers don’t get any interest to go through the script and the purpose of examination to any effect.

2. Weak students must be identified by the school or college authority and arrange special coaching and classes should be distributed among the teachers equally and they will get a reasonable amount of remuneration. Students will be benefited, guardians will heave a sigh of relief as they find it difficult to bear the special extra amount for their wards. Now teachers will be able to regain their honour and maintain their morality. if coaching is introduced in this way. Before doing that all the guardians and students’ opinion must be judged and evaluated. When the guardians will give their opinion it will be easy for the government to ban private coaching. When they will not need to pay more money for their ward’s private coaching, they will agree to pay a little more amount for meeting the expenditure of private coaching in the institution.

3. No teacher should be allowed to teach his own students privately in his/her house.

In the same way, students and guardians must be told not to allow their wards to read with their own teachers but it is not teaching or reading at all rather it is a way of passing the exams easily and it makes the teachers corrupt and encourages to leak out the questions.

For exceptionally weak students it may happen that coaching in the school and college cannot improve their condition. In this case, they need to read privately with some particular expert teachers. These students must not be allowed to read with their particular teachers.

4. Now all the schools and colleges prepare their own question papers which leaves ample scope for the teachers to exploit the students, as well as national or reasonable standard, is not maintained. A hundred schools prepare question of hundred types. All the question papers must be supplied by a central authority like the board or the headmaster/ principal of a particular school/ college will conduct the headmaster/ principal of another school to prepare question papers. The question setter must be given a good amount of remuneration  Preparing the question is an art and it must pertain to the teaching profession which must be known to all the teachers gradually.

5. Checking the scripts by the known teachers must be stopped for the greater inter of education. Teachers examine the script according to their own way and award marks to the students without maintaining any national standard. Fifty teachers examine the scripts in fifty ways which must be stopped immediately. Just like preparing questions checking the scripts must be done by the teachers of other institutions so that impersonal judgement can be done. Now students become victims of teachers liking and disliking and make scope for corruption.

Before checking the scripts all the teachers must attend in a common meeting to ascertain how to examine the scripts. Individual opinions must not be allowed to examine the scripts.

6. Teaching becomes a very boring job as teachers are to do the same thing year after, in the same school or college and meeting the same kind of students. So transferring the teachers from one school to another may remove this monotony. Suppose several teachers of a particular school or a college will be engaged for three or four months to another school or college. This move will give the teachers the following opportunities:

(i) It will remove the monotony of the teachers.
(ii) Teachers’ outlook and their knowledge about the outward world will expand.
(iii) Students will be able to receive different kinds of teaching from different kind of teachers which will add a novelty in their student life.
(iv) Teachers will be conscious enough to develop their proficiency and professional development as they are going to teach in a different situation, different school and different environment and their professional development will happen.
(v) Students of a particular school or college honour the teachers of that school or college. But this system will bring more honour to the teachers as the students of his visiting schools will also honour them.
(vi) The institution will give the visiting teachers a particular honorarium.

Every teacher must have professional and management training after every three years both at home and abroad. This training must also be financially benefited.

7. Teachers should be given ample scope to conduct research on his/ her field or any field which interests him/her. A research conference must be held annually and the best researchers would be honoured both locally and nationally.

8. A strong teacher’s welfare fund must be raised to ensure the financial security of the teachers. It may be district or thana wise. Some teachers will be deputed here for a certain period of time to conduct the affairs as well as to open his/her another field. This fund may raise poultry, dairy, shop, transport, stationery and other sustainable business where all the teachers of the district must have share and a certain benefit must be given from the fund after his retirement or when government benefit ceases for him.

9. The existing system of promotion in the schools and colleges is neither fair nor lucrative which is another cause for the brilliant candidates not to come and cling to this profession. Teachers are engaged in different educational institutions and are leaving because of not seeing any prospect but it has failed to draw the attention of the authorities concerned. The post of senior teacher, lecturer, senior lecturer, assistant professor, senior assistant professor etc. should be introduced in the educational institutions. All the promotion must be done through examinations. Undoubtedly teachers will feel encouraged to receive the promotion and study more.

When the teachers will be engaged in this way in different activities they will have an interest in their job. As it has become a  boring and monotonous job now and having no novelty in it, teachers engage themselves in private coaching thinking that they don’t have an interest in the job and no bright future, so it is better to earn something through private coaching. Private coaching limits their life and world and confines them to a particular world. In the greater interest of the nation the Ministry of education, Directorate of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education must think over the matters very seriously to save the standard of education from its present slanting position.

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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