‘Student futures should not be at stake’

Renu Devi, primary school teacher

As a single mother, I have to deal with and manage a lot of things. But right now, I call myself lucky because my children are all grown up. I have a friend, who has two children, one is five and the other is eight. She is struggling with taking care of them. She and her husband must take days off from work to take care of the kids during strike days. They are stressed that if things do not get sorted out soon, they will have to take unpaid leaves and that would be unsustainable. 

As a teacher, I agree with other teachers who are on strike because inflation and cost of living crisis has hit everyone. Teachers are not only struggling financially but also emotionally. Teachers deserve to be paid fairly but they should value children’s education over earning money.

As a parent, I am concerned about children’s studies. We shouldn’t forget about the pandemic, when kids all over the country missed a ton of education. It has impacted a generation of students. Now the continuous strikes are doing the same, which hinder their development.

My advice for parents would be to help guide their children through learning — even if it seems overwhelming because small steps do matter. Student futures should not be at stake. So, it’s the combined duty of everyone, be it teachers, parents or management, to find a solution as soon as possible. Otherwise the whole education system might collapse.

As told to Parul Malik

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