Redefining what it means to be a teacher

The brain-drain facing the teaching community in Bhutan is a sign of the times. The status of the teaching profession is declining. The public are ever ready to find fault with teachers and schools. Such public dissatisfaction is however not without basis.

The teaching profession, which in Bhutan is dominated by the government school system, is becoming ‘bureaucratized’ where the rules of the civil service govern the roles of the teachers. Teachers, being civil servants seem to be automatically ‘tenured’, and with this permanent job security, the pressure to do one’s best is deflated. As one teacher once put it, in the public system, ‘donkeys and horses’ are treated at par, and there is no discriminating reward for good performance.

It is our aspiration to change this trend and bring back the old status that teachers used to enjoy. This means teachers should not only receive emoluments that are respectable and in keeping with the responsibilities, but it also means that teachers should themselves respect the profession live up to its high standards.

We are confident that in time, we will successfully resurrect the special status of the teaching profession. Teachers who join our team will rediscover the inspiration that first drew them to teaching.