After reading the news in THE HINDU of a child’s death in Delhi due to corporal punishment, i am anguished and alarmed. This reminds me of my Tamil Teacher, whose name i do not want to disclose here, of Sarah Tucker Girls Higher Secondary School,Tirunelveli, way back in 1978-1979.I was a new comer of standard 6.She made sure that her student get pass mark,by beating them at the back of their fingers, right on the small and soft joints, beating them on their head and by making them kneel down at the back of the class for the whole hour until the end of that particular period.
Having studied in a Matriculation School till 5th Std, which had the option of choosing Hindi as my Second Language, i found it very hard to follow the Tamil language for the first time in my life. I was so scared of the Teacher and her beatings, that i struggled hard to get the pass mark in her subject every time. Every student of my class was very happy when the school declared that she will not teach Tamil next year, when we sat for the 7th Standard. Luckily she was not appointed as a Tamil Teacher until i finished the 8th Standard. And then came the 9th and 10th Standards, the so called High School Category. We had a very good, jovial, fun loving person as our Tamil Teacher. We looked forward to every Tamil period. We enjoyed her teaching. The way she made fun of the characters in every story in the syllabus, the way she explained the nuances of the Tamil language and the Literature, made us to score good marks,compared to other Sections, for whom the Medium of teaching was Tamil.Section A, my section, was the only English Medium class. There were many sections, from Section A to D (I guess there was till Section J, my memory is not helping me here, i beg your pardon for that).
I am narrating this incidents to convey that the teachers should be trained, motivated, educated by the Education Department as well as the School higher authorities to handle the different level of students. Nothing can revert the life of Shanno’s parents and her school mates, now that they have lost her, due to an arrogant and wild approach of a grown up person, who is known as “Teacher” in our society.
Anguised and Alarmed - Uma