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Number says it all: Nagaland, NE students poor in math

By Mirror Desk Updated: Sep 06, 2018 2:08 am
Students of St. Stephen Higher Secondary School of Dimapur wait for their turn to perform on stage during a Teacher’s Day programme in Dimapur. (EM Images)

Kohima, Sep. 5 (EMN): The annual status of education report 2017 says that only 30.4% of students in the age group 14-18 years in Nagaland can successfully do simple division arithmetic as against the national average of 43.1%. Calculation and evaluation can be managed by only 37.7% of the children compared to the national average of 50%. Only 19.6% of children in the age group in the Northeast region can do basic arithmetic compared to the national average of 37.7%.

It also revealed that high school teachers struggle with teaching students because most of the students have weak elementary foundation. This gives Nagaland the dubious distinction of having a weak academic base.

This was stated by advisor for School Education KT Sukhalu during the Teacher’s Day celebration at the NBCC convention centre in Kohima on Sep. 5. He said that the schools’ poor performance especially in mathematics and science was not encouraging. It is very much below the national average, he said. The teachers are reminded to reorient, update their skills, and change their teaching methods to keep pace with ever-shifting demands of academics and to cope with the challenges.

The officer said that the formative years of childhood i.e., six to eight years, is globally acknowledged to be the most critical period for lifelong development. Sukhalu pointed to the need to stimulate and enrich the physical and psychological environment to enable the child’s mind to develop its full potential.

“The issue of tribe, language, religion, race, food habits or any such thing should never be a ground for you to treat your students differentially,” Sukhalu said. The teachers were also reminded not to shame students who give wrong answers. Rather their courage in ‘answering out loud’ should be appreciated, besides encouraging students to speak out and question.  He opined that students should not passively accept everything they are told. Education is successful when students begin to question what they are taught, he said.

“Be fair in your treatment of students, they are still in such a malleable and vulnerable stage of their lives and they will remember the example you have set. The things they see in your class room will stay with them for life” he added.

Shortage of teachers

Sukhalu informed that the only delay in deploying teachers is due to an ongoing court case on the issue of seniority. Nonetheless, he reminded the headmasters and subject teachers especially mathematics and science at high and higher secondary to ensure that the students do not suffer for want of teachers and are well-prepared for examinations. Teachers can take a pledge today that all government high and higher secondary school will not repeat ‘zero’ results in 2019, he suggested.

‘Unsatisfied teachers should resign’

Sukhalu has termed unfortunate the many agitations by teachers in Nagaland; that certain sections of the teaching community would resort to agitations to seek fulfilment of demands.

“This is a democratic country where no one is forced to work against his/her wishes. Every job both in government and private sectors has terms and conditions and individuals seeking jobs are aware of the nature of employment before applying for the job,” the officer said. He added that individuals who are not satisfied with the terms of their service should not continue in service and can tender their resignation.

Biometric attendance soon

Teachers are reminded that the authorities will be introducing soon the Aadhaar-linked biometric attendance system for schools. Teachers are asked to submit their Aadhaar numbers to the department without further delay.  The officer also directed all ‘attached teachers’ to resume their duties by joining their assigned school without delay.

Fifteen teachers were awarded with the state level teachers award for 2018: Takurenla, GMS Tuli-C, Mokokchung; Narotola Imchen, LFHSS, Kohima; Roseline Komuha, St Mary’s Cathedral HSS, Kohima; Loreni Ngullie, GMS, Wokha town sector-A, Wokha; Sheela Thapa, Sacret Heart School, Mon; Mesehol Kweho, GHS, Kigwema, Kohima; P Athisiva Krishnan, St. Paul HSS, Dimapur; Petekhrie-o Sekhose, GHSS, Peren; Niekhochi Venuk, GHS, Phek village; Debasis Mahata, GHS, Yangphi, Kiphire; Santosh Kumar Tiwari, El Beth School, Kiphire; Mahadeb Mahapatra, GHS, Yachem, Longleng; Subhash Kumar, GHS, Kuthur, Tuensang; S Hamloi Konyak, GHSS, Mon and VP Ghuvishe Zhimomi, GHSS, Satakha.

KT Sukhalu also announced that Thursday would be a holiday for all schools in the state.

By Mirror Desk Updated: Sep 06, 2018 2:08:48 am