PAPUA New Guinea today has recorded many heroes and heroines that have come and gone, having their share of fame, but the influence of a good teacher lasts forever, a head teacher in East New Britain said.
Wartovo Kilala, head teacher of the Iatapal Primary School said this yesterday during the celebration of the National Teacher’ Day in the Gazelle district.
The focus of this was to draw the attention of the National Government and public to the value of teachers so that the status of teachers was placed back on top of the list of priorities of the Government’s consideration, public perception and realisation.
He said, without doubt, teachers were “bookworms” who dealt with books daily but were generally forgotten in books.
“Teachers are dying silently without receiving State funerals, retiring without recognition from the hierarchy and this is very sad if we reflect back on the many contributions they had made towards the human development of this nation,” he said.
Mr Kilala said the theme for this year’s celebration was “Teachers create dialogue everyday” and this, he said, meant there was continuous interaction between teachers and students for better learning.
He said teachers could only continue to create more educational dialogue if they were provided due recognition.
PNG Teachers Association representative in ENB, Rochus Birao said the importance of teachers in education for development and prosperity, education for all and the Millennium Goals and Strategy, could only be realised if teachers were valued and not treated as mere tools for development, but professional partners in education.
Mr Birao said PNGTA had successfully negotiated with the Government for a 7.5% real increase in salaries of teachers over a three-year period (2008- 10).