Some government school teachers have their own initiatives and are working together in a spirit of constructive cooperation, for reigning in improvements. This is something highly commendable.
And social media has a large part to play. Starting an informal WhatsApp group some three years ago, they then joined together in hike messenger and are now widening their reach through Facebook.
These are dedicated and talented teachers coming from different parts of Tamil Nadu, who are putting in unique efforts and also have tangible achievements to their credit in their chosen fields; and with a view of coordinating their activities, the group ‘Asaththum Arasu Palli Aasiriyargal’ or A3 in short (government school teachers who work virtual miracles) has been formed.
When there are already so many bodies and unions for teachers in the state, in what way this is different? The teachers who are part of this group already have some accomplishment or the other against their name, or are striving to achieve the same, and this remains as the distinctive feature of this special group and makes this special.
More than 600 teachers are functioning as members of our group. ‘Providing students good education’ is the shared vision which has united us and continues to remain as a driving force.
“More than 600 teachers are functioning as members of our group. ‘Providing students good education’ is the shared vision which has united us and continues to remain as a driving force. These teachers have a strong desire to impart quality education to the students, and our group helps them to improve their work and guides them so that they can bring out the versatile skills of their students through their teaching. This also helps them to share their experiences among themselves. Here, we also provide them with information about the training courses that are conducted for teachers both at the state and national level and make them participate and benefit out of it. We also organize English training classes and workshops towards technological learning. The teachers who get benefit out of these, take their new leanings to the doorsteps of the students,” says Uma Maheswari, the group’s coordinator and a government school teacher.
“We are also providing financial assistance to the students in many ways. We have procured used computers and laptops worth more than Rs 25 lakhs and distributed them to 20 schools, while we have also given new laptops to two schools, thanks to the assistance of some volunteers. We have also provided toilet facilities in eight schools in the districts of Chennai, Thiruvallur and Kanchipuram through charitable institutions. We got books worth Rs 1.35 lakhs, including the dictionary released by Crea Publications free of cost and gave them to 65 government-aided schools. With the help of the same publication, the book ‘Kagitha Paavaigal’ has also been given free to 100 schools. Our teachers are also actively taking part in state department initiatives like preparing subject textbooks, e-books, etc. There are also dedicating themselves to the activities related to school education protection scheme meant for reviving the government schools,” she further stated.