Of Teachers in Politics

Whether university students should be granted their freedom to be in politics has been fervently discussed and debated of late. But what about teachers in politics? A student in his first post for LoyarBurok weighs in on this debate.

The government’s decision to allow teachers to participate actively in politics has evoked criticisms and debates. Certain quarters believe that it would help to shape a better political landscape as their ideas can be channelled for the greater good of Malaysians. It is highly hoped that Malaysian politics will mature through teachers’ ideas pertaining to nation building.

school classroom

Needless to say, teachers play an important role in the education system. Their role in educating our students is vital in ensuring talented Malaysians are groomed in their respective fields and arena. Based on this notion, I humbly believe that teachers should stay away from politics simply because their role in education are more crucial than others.

The Malaysian education system has been plagued with controversy. We are always in a quandary when facing the question of how to produce excellent students. Various ideas have been laid out before us, yet we tend to hesitate in deciding what is best for our students.

As a student, I want my teachers to continue teaching in class and provide us with the joy of learning. I want them to share my happiest moments and guide me when I strayed from my path. I want my teachers to continuously inspire me to dream big and pursue my goals single-mindedly.

In my opinion, teachers should stay away from politics simply because they are good at teaching.

Teaching is part of national service because it helps to nurture the younger generation who will eventually bring this nation to greater heights. However, reality seems different and considerably more complicated. Our teachers are now given so much work to accomplish at any one time. We often hear of teachers complaining about their work load. They tend to lose focus on their sole duty of teaching.

Politics could be fun and challenging. But from what I have read in the newspaper, politics could be messy too. There are plenty of examples of internal bickering and party-hopping. The complication trickles down to various levels and this created negative perception on politics.

My question is, if teachers were to enter politics, how would they plan and prioritise between school and politics?

Multitasking could be good but I do not think politics and school are a good combination.

The teachers union also welcomed the move as the voice of teachers can now be heard at a higher level. However I am of the opinion that what they need is a strong union where their presence can no longer be ignored.

Teachers must go all out in pursuing the much needed reforms for the Malaysian education system – much like how lawyers are pursuing issues of justice and human rights.

Teachers know best about what is wrong with the system – where are its downfalls, what can work, and what won’t.

They do not need a political platform as what matters more is the collective decision from the teachers in pushing reforms for the sake of students’ future.

While many professionals are now making their way into politics, I believe that teachers should not do the same. They have bigger things to do rather than getting involved in politics which could get murky from time to time.

It is better for teachers to continually update and enrich themselves with knowledge and new skills to nurture students – young mind with vast potential. Hence, teachers need the right knowledge and value in order to carry out their duties effectively.

For the time being, let us leave politics to the politicians. That is their job. That is what they are paid for. They have to serve us, the rakyat.

How about the teachers? Well, they are here to educate us, the rakyat.

LB: Fendy Hasni is currently pursuing his A-Levels. He believes that determination, hard work , and talent will guarantee success in life. Fendy plans to read law and aspires to be a good lawyer someday. His preoccupation is mainly on topics regarding education and politics. Being a teenager, he happily admits to following the latest Hollywood gossip. He believes that those who have access to knowledge, information and facts are the most powerful people on Earth. He blogs at akufendy.

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Posted on 26 August 2010. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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