Teachers – The Unsung Heroes

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“Those who can do, do. Those who can’t, teach.”

If you haven’t yet heard this saying, especially in our society where teaching is considered the last resort for a profession and deemed unworthy of being opted for as a priority, you can consider yourself the chosen one. Sadly enough, it’s a fairly common belief. Although it might be argued that there lies some truth to the statement and teachers are responsible for the image they project of themselves, we very well know of our stereotypical attitude towards teachers and the significantly compromised share of importance we give to any aspect of their profession, be it the resources they require, the unsatisfactory rewards and nearly non-existent benefits they receive, or the acknowledgement they deserve but are deprived of.

Unrecognized and disregarded, teaching has been pushed to the bottom in the list of desirable professions today with every parent wanting their child to have a secure and promising career, which apparently, in their eyes, teaching does not offer and is for those with lacking skills while teachers become who they are out of compulsion because they failed at everything else. How is it that a profession once considered so noble has today faded into the background and only brought into the limelight to face ridiculing remarks?

Nevertheless, among us are teachers who are an open defiance to such perceptions, who rebel everyday by putting their heart and soul into meeting the challenges of such a demanding profession; something most people choose not to. Any of you who have come under the influence of such a teacher will surely understand; for the others… heartfelt condolences for the magic you’ve missed, but that I have witnessed and luckily, on several occasions and encounters. So it’s not a mistake when I confidently vouch for the fact that teachers indeed do hold immense power to impact their students in a whole variety of ways, both inside and outside the bounds of academia, and in doing so, are making a difference one child at a time.

While we claim to be cultivated and raise our hands in favour of education, it’s ironic that we refuse to embrace teacherhood itself, the primary tool to impart education and its role as the central architect of society. Committed and competent teachers are the dire need of hour for Pakistan, and if you are not willing to be one despite the power it grants you and the self-actualization it ultimately brings about, the least we can do is encourage, respect and appreciate the efforts of those who choose to do so. Although it is no crime to take up a different profession, it is unacceptable to believe that teaching would be a waste of your potential and is below you. It is undeniably the parent of all other professions. Doctors, engineers, businessmen, artists, pilots… where are teachers not crucial? It’s high time we acknowledge teaching as a complete profession instead of approaching it as simply a good deed.

Yes, undoubtedly teaching is a noble cause, but that does not make it any less of a profession. It’s not just welfare work, but a fully-fledged career that demands just as much potential as any other profession and is worth just as much; perhaps even more. After all, it is both a science and an art! Name another profession where in one day you must be an entertainer, a philosopher, a data analyst, a writer, a counselor and a detective as well, all while they do more than just ‘teach’. They motivate, inspire, enlighten and impact lives for the better. Teachers, the unsung heroes, should be celebrated; not made victims of snide comments. So the next time someone tells you they want to become a teacher don’t respond with “Seriously?” and especially if they’ve got good grades, with “But you can do so much better!” Rather, appreciate their choice with the belief that,

“Those who can do, do. Those who can do more, teach.”

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