A Thank You to Teachers

A Thank You to TeachersA Thank You to Teachers

Once in a while we may hear of some unpalatable news that a teacher has used corporal punishment or physical violence on a student, but the truth of the matter is that the large number of teachers who have made sacrifices and devoted their lives to their profession is far greater.  

In the past five years alone, 36 teachers have lost their lives in service in Iran. Fatal accidents on the way to school in inhospitable regions and remote areas, is the main danger nomadic teachers face almost every day.  

“They have to travel a long distance between their place of residence and schools which is a risky task, especially during winter,” the Persian language newspaper ‘Sharq’ daily reported, on the occasion of Teacher’s Day (May 1) in the country.

Last year (ended March 19), Ali Norouzi a teacher of a nomadic school in Tasouj, Kohgiluyeh -Boyerahmad Province, lost his life returning from home when his car got trapped in snow.

According to available data, 9, 12 and 10 nomadic teachers lost their lives due to accidents on their way to school in 2013, 2014 and 2015, respectively.  

Another challenge faced by educators (as well as students), is the unsafe and distressed school buildings and their dangerous heating systems particularly in rural and nomadic settings.

Last month, Hamid Reza Gangozehi, a teacher in Nuk Ju village in the southeastern Sistan-Baluchistan Province, died when he rushed to rescue three of his students after seeing the floor and walls of a house crumble as heavy rains and winds lashed the region. He managed to save the lives of the students but was fatally trapped under the debris as the building collapsed.

  Security Problems

While all teachers in deprived areas face problems on a regular basis, teachers in Sistan-Baluchestan have to put up with security problems as well. In 2013, four dedicated teachers were killed in terror attacks in the province. They are the real heroes.

According to the provincial Police Chief Hussein Rahimi, a jailed terrorist claimed responsibility for the attacks as he wanted “to prevent and thwart the efforts of teachers imparting education in the region’s schools.”

There are 6,120 classrooms for more than 171,000 nomadic students across the country. About 12,000 nomadic teachers have taken the onerous responsibility to teach the children.

Nearly 60 years ago, Mohammad Bahmanbeigi (1919–2010), father of tribal education in Iran and the first nomadic teacher in the country, who was a graduate of the Tehran University’s Law School, directed the tribal education program for the first time in the country.

At present, a total number of 650,000 teachers are teaching 17 million students across the country.