One teacher wants a roof, another wants health care

FrontNational Award winning teachers with their children at Vigyan Bhawan in Delhi Thursday. (IE Photo: Renuka Puri)

Chandaji received an award for his use of information communication and technology in teaching. He and his students have created a software that teaches optics and the science of refraction to students in Gujarati through the use of interdisciplinary, interactive methods.

In the hot and dry district of Dujod, Rajhasthan, Shri Shricand, who teaches at the Government Secondary School, recounted a similar tale of partial development. "The development has been restricted to urban areas. In rural areas, education still has a very long way to go. More students need to see the inside of the existing classrooms," he said.

Sangkit Lepcha, from Sikkim's Mangan district, has been teaching for the last 34 years. "I have been selected for my consistency and my work in north Sikkim," she said.

Asgar Ali, a teacher at Purva Madhyanul Vidyalaya in Bulandshahr, said his focus has been on educating girls. "There are more girls in my school than boys. In the past few years, a lot of development has happened, but mindsets still have to change. A lot of work still needs to be done though. For instance, my school still doesn't have a boundary wall, which is a problem," he said.

Gagan Bihari Panda, from Tumusinga village in Dhenkanal, Orissa, teaches at the PU Vidyapeeth. "Most of my students are well below the poverty line. For them education isn't as easy as it is in the city. This award has given me courage to continue with my work," he said. On being asked if he plans to stay in Delhi, Gagan Bihari smiled politely and said, "No, there's a lot of work to be done."

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