Wednesday, September 12

Random Thoughts

~ Rashi

It is my 100th day at HiWEL and also the 100TH day in the social sector.100 days of learning, questioning, introspection, hope, frustration and belief…….

And that one question which has cropped up time and again……………

While most fresh young government employees- Teachers or IAS officers enter the system with the intention of putting in their best and making a positive difference ,is there something in our system and society at large that converts them into counter productive members? Why is it that the same people perform absolutely differently in the private sector? Should we blame them or does the responsibility lie equally with the system? As was said my Newton centuries ago – every equal and opposite reaction is a result of some action……..

We have heard many anecdotes of cases where the teachers simply sit around and don’t bother to teach or teachers beating the children or teachers teaching by rote learning. We have met many government officials who claim to be the harbinger of social change and yet don’t blink an eyelid without some “favor”……

And this chain of thoughts makes me question the various aspects of the system-

Are we attracting the best people?
Best talent is attracted to professions that have high brand value, that provide continuous opportunity to increase self worth and fulfill personal needs. All this is available in abondance to a government officers ……then what went wrong.
A government school teacher is still the most educated person in the village, it is still considered a noble profession, and they are paid well…..There seems to be no erosion in the status …..then what went wrong.

Are they prepared well for the challenges in the social sector?
Teachers might have the requisite subject knowledge but do they understand the pedagogic issues? Do they understand the background of most kids in the slums and are the they sensitive and motivated enough to deal with the challenges?

Are they mostly pawns on a chessboard or do they have the autonomy to take decisions? And also if they are given the autonomy can they make informed decisions?

Is there any reward for risk if they perform well and conversely deterrent for non-performance? Is there a transparent and credible system to assess their performance? Can this be the reason for the inertia?

Is their a mechanism to energize them from time to time? Don’t they get immune to misery and just turn a blind eye to it?

I can go on and on rambling ….. I don’t know who is at fault but I guess somehow somewhere to create accountability one needs to create conducive conditions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I echo your sentiments and how true it is, that a like minded group as well as dogged determination, not to mention the "right" contacts can take a project like this, ahead.