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Teaching? – Naaah…

February 25, 2009

           There are some jobs in this world which can be done only by those who are passionate about it. Only they can do justice to it. The job of teaching is one such. When we talk about the quality of education major thing that will strike our mind is the quality of teachers. Even though our education institutions are scratching the last penny from the parents’ pockets, the amount they are paying to the teachers who are working in them is very less. Not even a 20% of the total fees. I will not wonder if the school institutions soon reporting about their annual profit and college institutions their half-yearly(Semester) profit-loss report. With the teachers are being underpaid many talented graduates were reluctant to take up the job even though they love it. With the price of living in this world is shooting up every now and then, it is not advisable to take teaching as a profession.

           Now-a-days the ones (not all) who are taking up the job are who didn’t get any job to do. It’s not without a reason. They lack respect, dignity and the least thing money. Some 20 or 25 years back, the teachers’ commanded respect like no other. They are treated like gods. They are respected so as their words. Now, if somebody says that he/she was a teacher, the next question that will be shot at them is “Haven’t you get any other better job”? During my school days, there are teachers whom I liked much. The ones whom I liked, they are passionate about their profession. They are proud about themselves. I am able to sense it when they teach us. But as the years went, their proportion also reduced. The ones who are joined later were not upto the standards.

         When I studied my college, my tuition fee is 27,000 rupees (the other fees I had paid is 25,000). By the Anna University’s direction there must be a teacher for every 20 students. So 20*27000 = 5, 40,000 rupees. Most of the lecturers in my college were just finished their engineering degree. The starting salary for them is 5000 rupees. If he/she is post graduated means its 7000 rupees. With each year’s experience it will increase by 1000 rupees. So even if we take the average salary as 8000 rupees (it won’t be beyond that) they are getting only 96,000 rupees/year which is below 20% of the tuition fees. Also make a note that many institutions were not maintaining the ratio at 20:1. There is a college which doesn’t have enough lecturers called some of their former students to act as lecturers during auditing. Now the tuition fee is shot up to 40000 rupees, but I don’t know whether the salary of the lecturers has been increased atleast by the same proportion.

           To touch a 5 digit salary they have to wait for 3 years. With the MNCs offering a 5-digit salary at the start of their careers itself, no wonder many brilliant and talented minds were grabbing it. Our society has now become money driven one. More the money you have, more the respect you will get. Even a person who gets money in illegal ways has more respect in this society. The respect those who works in MNCs are getting in this present society will never get by the lecturers. The one who has become the lecturer will just open to any other option available. Most of them will be doing their part time M.E. parallely. By doing that, they not only incresing their qualification and knowledge but also increasing their opportunities for other jobs.

          I don’t think the situation will be better in private schools too. The time has run very quickly that I have paid only 55 rupees/month in my 5th standard, now you don’t even able to dream about that for L.K.G also. Just 13 years have been passed after that. The boarding schools in the Salem district in Tamilnadu are paying a good salary for the teachers but they have to work 12 hours/day, and 28 days/month. So it’s an awful situation for the teachers. Only the teachers who are working in government schools and colleges were getting some respect, money and lots of leaves.

          Now something needs to be done to restore the respect and dignity of the teaching profession. For that their salaries must be increased. But with the government are acting like puppets of the money thirsty educational institutions, they are not going to pass any kind of norms or orders. Nobody other than government can do that.

            Teachers are basement for a good citizen to be produced. If the basement isn’t good then its really a dangerous situation and our children will fell very dearly, which is not at all a good sign for a country which is striving to become a developed nation.

PS: When I just googled for this I have got the below article from Sify which says:

One of the main reasons for this trend, according to Krishna Kumar, director of the National Council of Education Research and Training (NCERT), is the low salary structure of teachers, especially when compared with other career options like management. “The status that a teacher enjoyed in the yesteryears is not true now, their pay is not enough and their welfare is hardly taken care of. A yoga, art or music teacher in many schools works only on a contract basis and in Madhya Pradesh they have teachers working only on a contract basis. It’s true when a Unesco report says that a teacher is in a crisis today”.

One of the primary school teacher Sharmila Das, said:

“I love my job but there are moments of frustration when I see my friends leading a much more luxurious and expensive lifestyle than I can ever afford. We started at the same time in our careers and I put in as much hard work as they do in their management careers, if not more. But we have ended up in very different places.”

     Another article from TOI says that:

India is facing a cruch situation in finding teachers for the job and our student-teacher ratio is very low. By 2006, for the 24 crore students who are studying in class I to Class VIII, we need 60 lakh teachers to maintain the ratio of 1:40 but we have only 52 lakh teachers. The ratio is better in class IX to XII(1:33)  and higher education(1:25). But it’s because of the dropout of the students. Please read this for more

27 Comments leave one →
  1. February 25, 2009 11:55 pm

    Private tutors usually make a lot more money than teachers, but work a lot less. Where is the justice? 😦

    kanagu: But those tutors give specialised attention to students studying under them.. whatever the reason maybe the present system of teachers’ pay is just a crap

  2. February 25, 2009 11:55 pm

    @ Kanagu : Interesting post. I have never liked teachers 🙂 In a way perhaps because I have always wanted their jobs. Though you are right there is no money in teaching. It seems to be the same in almost all countries. Its difficult, exhausting and in a way not rewarding and I can tell because I grew up with two teachers who have spent their lives struggling. May be a new look at their jobs is needed.

    kanagu: Thanks Odzer 🙂
    Surely Odzer… they are keep on struggling and thats why the brilliant minds are reluctant to take up the teaching as a profession.. some changes are surely needed

  3. February 26, 2009 1:34 am

    quite an interesting summarised post, Kanagu. if the system is stabilised by taking care that education funds go to education n not somebody’s pocket, that the teacher-student ratio is a decent number, that true nation building starts with educated, confident youngsters with integrity instilled in every cell of their body….

    Catch hold of the education minister, twist his ears n ask him all these questions, what say ?

    anyways, lets start in small possible ways – Teach a child or 2

    kanagu: Thanks Vinne 🙂
    By twisting the ears we can’t achieve anything.. everything in our country that too from politicians can be get only at the knife edge.. 😀
    Thats a nice suggestion.. even I am trying to do that 🙂

  4. Solilo permalink
    February 26, 2009 2:08 am

    I mentioned something similar in one of your comments sometime back. Till teaching is a job, teachers can’t do justice. But then our education system is such that everything is a business.

    I see my Pre-K daughter’s teachers and when I interact with them I can see so much passion in them for teaching. They go out of the way to actually impart education. It is not merely a job for me. I hope we get that kind of education at a starting level in India. Not teachers throwing duster at a 5 year old.

    kanagu: Yeah Solilo!!! I had the thought before.. and when I read your comment.. I started writing this post.. Thanks for that 🙂
    Even in our country teachers with passion are there.. especially the ones in Kinder gardens.. Even though I couldn’t name anybody now.. They are there 🙂

  5. Solilo permalink
    February 26, 2009 2:09 am

    *them instead of me 🙂

    kanagu: 🙂

  6. February 26, 2009 5:09 am

    Teach a child is the best option- I always tell my friends and used to do it when I was at Chennai- even before this campaign was started- during my school days my school adopted few govt schools and made the students who are willing to teach them…and during college i taught few kids from doooming kuppam, santhome, Chennai… the least we can do for India..

    kanagu: Thats is the real good thing, everybody can do 🙂 I am willing to do that.. Your job is great 🙂

  7. Bharat permalink
    February 26, 2009 9:08 am

    Please visit my blog on where I have started a campaign to restore respect for teachers and increase their pay.

    Let us do something about it rather than just feel sorry.

    kanagu: Sure Bharat!! I will visit your blog soon 🙂

  8. Bharat permalink
    February 26, 2009 9:12 am

    Please visit my blog on where I have started a campaign to restore respect for teachers and increase their pay.

    Let us do something about it rather than just feel sorry.

  9. February 26, 2009 10:08 am

    One of the best post from you so far!! 🙂

    In India if we want to improve the society structure the first thing to be done is to improve education. And with the salary structure that i see, it will be very difficult to get passionate people with high quality educational backgroud. And when the foundation is weak, what do you expect the building to be like!! 😦

    I don’t see any sea change in many more years to come. 😦

    kanagu: Thank you Sakhi 🙂
    Even I am not able to see a sea change… but something needs to be done.. don’t know how its going to happen 😕

  10. Vijay permalink
    February 26, 2009 10:51 am

    It is a very nice thought provoking ariticle dude. A lot of my engineering classmates have become teachers, only by chance and not by choice. They couldn’t crack any interviews / tests in any of the companies. The result, they have become lecturers, with absolutely no credentials. A guy who had so many arrears in his college life, is now the Head of Department in a private Engineering college. If this is the calibre of teachers, just can’t imagine the quality of engineers that college will be churning out.

    kanagu: Thanks Bro 🙂
    Thats what I didn’t explicitly mentioned in my post.. These are the things I have seen in my college.. But the cause of this problem is money and our society 😦

  11. Chirag Chamoli permalink
    February 26, 2009 11:23 am

    @Some jobs in this world which can be done only by those who are passionate about it: Dude, actually every job, needs passion. But that said, yes, teaching is separate plane. most of the teach who, are tutors enjoy the great living. Teaches still have a simpler lives. The solution seems to lie in the fact that teaching should be as rewarding a tutoring. The whole economy of Kota based on the tutions.

    kanagu: They can have simpler lives.. But they too must enjoy this life… for that they need respect and money which they are lacking 😦

  12. February 26, 2009 12:32 pm

    Very well written article kanagu…

    I m software engineer and use to like teaching job a lot while i was in college…but coz of very obvious reasons like pay and kind of status teacher have in our society didnt opted for this as carrer..

    But your article let me rethink of atleast becoming a part of “Teach a Child campaign ” !!

    kanagu: Welcome here Rashmi 🙂
    And thank you 🙂
    Teach a child campaign is a good thing.. that is the way we can see a brighter society 🙂

  13. February 26, 2009 2:46 pm

    Coming from a family of teacher[my mom,grandma,all aunts] I can understand this scenario.Only the government pay structure for teachers is somewat decent though it still is peanuts before other jobs,private schools and colleges make huge profits. Imagine a scenario where the student is carrying a mobile worth 30k which is like the 3-4months salary of the teacher, wud he ever give respect to the teacher?. Worst affected are the english,history teachers..the maths,science ones make money with tuitions.

    kanagu: A student respects teacher is a different thing. Its not about money. It is how he/she teaches and the way they are behaving. But this society won’t respect you unless you have money 😦

  14. February 26, 2009 3:56 pm

    I loved absolutely loved this post of yours Kanagu
    teachers are underpaid and are overlooked in the overall scehme of things…but teachers by themselves too are a part of the problem…ny post on teachers(I hope to do it soon)will be linked to yours and inspired by yours..:)

    kanagu: Thanks Indyeah.. I am really happy 🙂
    teacher are a part of their problem.. couldn’t understand :SSS:
    Waiting for your post 🙂

  15. February 26, 2009 5:19 pm

    You’re right, Kanagu- teachers are underpaid and undervalued. They deserve more considering that they are shaping the future of our country.

    kanagu: You have got my point 🙂

  16. February 26, 2009 9:11 pm

    Teaching is a noble profession. Period. As *manju* mentioned, they deserve a lot more… I still harbour a lot of goodwill for my teachers. What I am now, is because of them.

    Unfortunately, the field of education has become “business”. And teaching has also been affected. Of late, I do not find *teachers*. I see people who are doing “business”. Education… Reminds me of Sati Al-Husri. He had said, “Knowledge is like the air that surrounds you, and should be available to all. Free.”

    Neat post, mate. Tc.

    kanagu: Thanks Kartz 🙂
    Whatever we are.. it will be because of some of our teachers.. but the pay structure is very bad for them.. something needs to be done to bring respect to them 🙂


  17. February 27, 2009 1:40 am

    Its always been an enigma to me why teachers make so little in some places..they act as role models to our children OR AT LEAST THEY SHOULD. Baseball players are millionaires Teacher are Paupers..dont know something went wrong somewhere…great post very well said…zman sends

    kanagu: Thanks Steve 🙂
    The society runs behind a player who hits home run and leaves the people who are shaping the country 😦

  18. February 27, 2009 2:35 am

    Wonderful article. I personally know a lot of my lecturer friends who crib about their pay.

    Btw, have you watched the movie Katradhu Tamizh (Tamil M.A.)? and the frustration he essays when he meets one of his classmate drawing a huge salary in a IT company?? This post once again reminded me of that classic scene.

    kanagu: Thanks Vimal 🙂
    I have watched it.. that is the kind of frustration they have on this society which disrespects them 😡

  19. February 27, 2009 11:52 am

    :((( i was just about to write a topic on the very same topic..:) well wait and watch now ;P
    even i seriously wonder when such a lot of money is extracted from the public in the name of education..y are the teachers pay cheques still so light!

    kanagu: Oh.. sorry verbi.. 😦 anyway waiting read your version on this 🙂
    The institutions are getting them and making their bank balances healthier 😦

  20. February 28, 2009 5:08 am

    Excellent Post as always. All my Aunts were teachers. You are right, it requires a lot of dedication and passion.

    Keep Blogging!

    kanagu: Thanks Biju 🙂

  21. February 28, 2009 7:13 pm

    100 percent true ..
    people who must be paid high are paid the least ..
    it would even motivate teachers/lecturers to piut 100 percent more effort ..

    kanagu: yes Arvind 🙂

  22. March 1, 2009 12:10 am

    I think there are a very few teachers who are passionate about what they teach and even fewer students in that category (Especially in the engineering colleges). I think teaching is a very good career option and I don’t find the urban youth taking it up, sadly. I think we should take this economic downturn esp. in the IT segment as an opportunity which would churn out more quality teachers.

    Destination Infinity

    kanagu: Everybody were keeping the teaching as the last option. And they are doing that for survival.. Anyway they can’t be blamed for that.. after all they are getting paid, which is just enough for their food 😦

  23. March 1, 2009 8:23 pm

    Just passing by.Btw, your website have great content!

    Making Money $150 An Hour

  24. March 1, 2009 11:51 pm

    Your data is wrong. Maybe the situation is like that in South India but being a lecturer myself I can tell u the situation is very much different here.
    The points of having the passion is true and I have seen many who lack it and are just here because of circumstances or family problems. But I have also seen those who enjoy the profession including myself and those who command respect. The lack of respect depends not only the less age diff between students and lecturers in private colleges but also the attitudes of students of nowadays. Nuclear families are definitely producing spoilt kids.
    “The respect those who works in MNCs are getting in this present society will never get by the lecturers. The one who has become the lecturer will just open to any other option available.”

    This is wrong and totally one sided view. Being in the system I can tell u there are many who love their jobs and have given up the opportunity to work in MNCs or PSUs.
    As for the salary a fresher starts at 10000 (8000 + others) here. If u r an and some years exp then ur salary is easily 30000+
    And part time M.E. /M.Tech is unacceptable by AICTE.

    But yes the young graduates and the society need to accept that lectureship is also a job and carries much more responsibility and authority than any other MNC job.

    kanagu: As you are a lecturer and passionate about your job, I liked to have your comment on this post Reema. Thank you 🙂
    I have mentioned in my post that ‘NOT ALL’ were taking teaching profession unwillingly. But many of them does.
    /*”The respect those who works in MNCs are getting in this present society will never get by the lecturers. The one who has become the lecturer will just open to any other option available.”*/
    This is my real experience. When I was in college none of my staffs were present till the end of course. Everybody shifted to some other MNC jobs. They all considered teaching as burden.
    And the data I have provided is for Tamil nadu and also I like to mention there are very few colleges which were adhere by the morms of AICTE

  25. March 3, 2009 9:32 pm

    Teaching is always a difficult job, one that I’m not suited for. The only time I’ve taught a group was when I was asked to train fresh recruits as a part of my work but I was never comfortable explaining the theoretical aspects on the board 😦

    kanagu: It needs some composure, patience and passion. That why I mentioned it requied passion to be a good teacher. Anyway I think you won’t be too worried about this Raj 🙂

  26. September 11, 2009 2:51 am

    A very nice article on this subject Kanagu.. “India is facing a cruch situation in finding teachers for the job and our student-teacher ratio is very low.” – very sad right? “With the MNCs offering a 5-digit salary at the start of their careers itself, no wonder many brilliant and talented minds were grabbing it.” – totally agree.. wonderful post!!

    • September 14, 2009 12:50 am

      Thanks AK.. 🙂

      for taking time and reading this post.. I am honoured 🙂

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