We mould the remnants – Alpana Barve

It was the most awaited day for our institute, rather for every educational institution since it was the tenth standard board’s results day. Everyone was eager to know if we would be able to maintain the legacy of cent percent results.
One may wonder what is so great about getting such results. Almost all schools achieve it every year. Yes, agreed, but ours is an altogether different scenario.
We believe in right to education not only to the elite section of the society but also to the weaker section. Our institute gives admission to those who are rejected in other ‘prestigious’ schools.
REJECTED on the basis of their substandard family background.
REJECTED because of their parents’ financial status.
REJECTED as their parents are illiterate, but want their children to be literate.
REJECTED as their parents cannot speak or understand English.
REJECTED as their parents fail to provide them the basic amenities.
REJECTED owing to their not so smart physical appearance.
We welcome them with open hearts and open arms. In our institute, the children of a teacher, a doctor, a maid, a rickshaw driver, a roadside vendor or businessmen, all study together under the same roof, in the same atmosphere.
A two-and-a-half-year-old little baby is transferred from the loving and caring mother’s hand into the hands of a compassionate teacher. The teacher becomes the child’s second mother. She gently holds their hand and teaches them to write. First the scribbles, then the patterns, followed by alphabets, words, sentences and eventually an essay.
A couple of years ahead, they are introduced to new and varied subjects. We teachers inculcate in them the basic values of life and boost their confidence. We make them capable enough to think that they are equal to all the other students in the class and help them get rid of their inferiority complex.
As they enter their teens, they become more sensitive and vulnerable towards the discrimination done by the society between them and the other children. They master the art of compromising or adjusting as the situation demands. They either go into depression, get distracted, fall in bad company or on a positive note develop their talents to match the other clever students (which is very rare). Here the teacher comes to their rescue. She specifically understands their problem and guides them to overcome it. She protects them from falling prey to any evils. She gives shape to their future by mixing in them the right proportion of self-respect, assurance and self-reliance.
The journey of the child from nursery to tenth standard is thus made smooth and hassle free by the continuous care and direction of the teachers.
But what about those who are admitted in the institute in standard eighth or ninth? It is very difficult to wipe out the impact on their minds. Impact of not being smart or not being worthy of anything. A teacher very skillfully tackles one issue at a time, develops their totally shattered self-esteem and builds their morale. Once the emotional aspect is done right, she turns to the academic part and guides the child appropriately to take efforts in order to overcome the flaws.
We are blessed to have such entirely dedicated and committed teachers who strive to give their best in order to bring out the best in their students. Each and every moment we are on our toes, running from one class to another, one floor to another. Though we work to financially support our
family, however, this takes a back seat when the student’s future is at stake. At no cost will we put them in any loss. It is true that our efforts are taken for granted. Still, outside the premises when our student or ex-student meets us and runs to wish and take our blessings, notwithstanding the crowd, this is the best recognition we get. When we get to know that our once distressed student is now a successful person, it brings tears of joy and gratification to our eyes.
To mould a beautiful and intricate artefact using good quality clay is easy. But to mould a masterpiece out of the fragments of clay is a trying and challenging task.
Yes, our scenario is different.
We mould the remnants.

Alpana Barve
2nd July, 2024.

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