Dubai: Indian schools in the UAE are hosting several activities on Thursday to honour teachers as part of celebrations for Teachers’ Day (September 5) being celebrated in India.
In India, Teachers’ Day is held on September 5 annually in honour of Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, a middle-class teacher who went on to become India’s second president. He was born on September 5, 1888, and India has marked its Teachers’ Day on September 5 every year since 1962.
Most other countries celebrate World Teachers’ Day, established by UNESCO in 1994, on October 5 as their Teachers’ Day.
In the UAE, home to 3.3 million Indian expats, Indian schools are on Thursday hosting various events to honour teachers, who have been held in high esteem as part of Indian culture since ancient times.
‘Like no other’
Teachers in Indian society are considered “the highest in order”, The Indian High School (IHS) in Dubai said on Wednesday.
“One must always listen and respect as it is the teacher who bestows us with wisdom and knowledge. Even today, the Indian society believes and respects a teacher like no other. Carrying forward our tradition and customs, on every Teacher’s Day, the students at IHS show love as well as gratitude for their mentors.”
IHS and The Indian International School’s (IIS) senior students will on Thursday dress up as “student teachers” to teach skills to junior classes. The students have also planned various activities for their teachers so they can “enjoy and let loose on their special day”.
Celebratory programmes will be organised at IHS, The Indian High School – Garhoud (Junior School), and IIS – all part of a school group. The junior school is hosting a series of performances including a fashion show, dance and music performances. The Young Chef Club students have baked a cake to surprise their teachers. The calligraphy club will be making cards for the teachers.
Also, this year the schools management is giving a token of appreciation to all the teachers by presenting a personalised letter from the chairman, along with a ceramic coffee mug to all its teachers to promote sustainability and reduce the use of plastic cups.
Dr Ashok Kumar, CEO of IHS, told Gulf News: “Teachers are an important facet of a student’s life. A teacher in real life plays several roles as a guardian, caretaker, instructor, facilitator, mentor, etc. That is a long list of responsibilities that a teacher is expected to comply with. And the Indian High School thanks each and every teacher for keeping up their role in the lives of our students. I feel elated with the achievements of the school but I will strive to keep doing better every year. ”
Tapan Das, Senior Supervisor, Department of Human Performance, IHS, said: “I have been working with the Indian High School for the last 39 years and the adventure it has been is inexpressible. As a teacher I feel content and thankful each day that in my lifetime I had the opportunity to coach a large number of students. Being a teacher is not just about sharing knowledge but also about inspiring students, to ensuring their success and encouraging them to fulfil their potential. I believe there is no other profession this fulfilling.”
Dr Kumar was awarded the National Award for the Best Teacher in 2002 by then President of India, Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam in a special ceremony held on Teachers Day. He was also awarded the Best Principal Award in 2001 by then Minister of Education in India, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi in a ceremony instituted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE). IHS said it was the first time that both these awards were given to anyone in the GCC and it was initiated from that year onwards.
Delhi Private School in Dubai (DPS Dubai) also said the ‘Guru’, or teacher, in Indian culture “commands the highest respect and Teachers’ Day will be enthusiastically celebrated”.
DPS Dubai students will greet their teachers with smart boards in classrooms spelling out messages of love and appreciation; some with personalised handmade cards and some will choose to say it with flowers.
Students will don the mantle of teachers, relieving the teachers for an hour to enjoy an assembly dedicated to the teachers. During the assembly, students will sing, dance, recite and pay tribute to the contribution of teachers in their lives.
DPS Dubai principal Rashmi Nandkeolyar said: “We are always deeply moved by the affection of our students on this day and accept their love with humility and gratitude. It is, indeed, the highest reward a teacher can get!”
In a statement from its senior leadership team, GEMS Modern Academy in Dubai said: “Teachers’ Day over the years has evolved into a very special day at Modern. The day begins with a special assembly conducted by the students for their teachers. Dr Radhakrishna’s birthday is celebrated with the grade 11 students dressing up formally and playing the ‘teacher’ by taking classes as they vie for the ‘best teacher’ prize.
“From kindergarten to grade 12, they make their teachers feel very special and go all out to ensure they have a memorable day. The afternoon entertainment event by the students is much looked forward to by the teachers, who return the compliments and the ‘roast’ on Children’s Day.
“A special lunch and a surprise is planned by the management and it’s a wonderful day of bonding, fun, laughter and joy with the students truly making their teachers feel loved and valued.”
Messages from students to teachers at Delhi Private School in Dubai (DPS Dubai)
Parth, head boy of the primary school, said: “Our teachers are our second moms and celebrating Teachers’ Day is the least we can do for them. They work at all times, day or night, just to make us successful.”
Radhika, head girl of the primary school, said: “I feel my teachers are my superheroes. They can do anything and everything to make us really, really well. I thank my teachers for making my life so happy and perfect.”
Aryaman, Vice Head Boy, Senior School, said: “Teachers are our trusted companions who instil in us hope and cheer us through those tough times so that we emerge triumphant and happy.”
Kanushree, Vice Head Girl, Senior School, said: “It was an enormous privilege to organise the special assembly for our beloved teachers, it’s a very small gesture on our part but it truly heartfelt. Dear teachers, we will never ever forget your selfless contribution which has moulded us so exquisitely.”