Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Professional Characteristics Expected of a Teacher

Gilbert M. Forbes

Principals and the public want ideal characteristics from their teachers which ideally are primary components of well- performing schools.  Accept it or not, but teachers are the heart of education given their gargantuan roles.  To have good and better teachers equate to good and better quality learning experiences among learners even in the most unparallel situations.  It could not be substituted by flashy school buildings and facilities equipped with state of the art equipments.  The very reason why expensive private schools insure that they employ highly qualified teaching staff is to ensure that they are offering the best education for their clients.

What more in our public schools, do children of poor fellow country men deserve quality education if not at par is at least comparable to their rich counterparts?  In so doing, school principals, have seen ten major characteristics that their fellow teachers should posses.  Many of these if not all are incorporated in the professional and personal characteristics of the Performance Appraisal System for Teachers.
  • Decisiveness.  Acts immediately on needs, request in accordance with the prescribed rules and regulations and accepted norms of conduct and behavior.  In this regard, he/she is not causing delay in any endeavor.
  • Honesty and Integrity.  He/she demonstrates truthfulness, candidness, uprightness and freedom from deceit.  Just a mere glance of him already commands an inspiration, respect and admiration.
  • Dedication and Commitment. His commitment and dedication to make learning and continuously strive for improvement is evident.  He renders service above the regular functions and even beyond the regular time.
  • Initiative and Resourcefulness.  Starts action, projects and performs task without being told and supervised.  It does equate with strong sensitivity to make every thing spec and span.
  • Courtesy.  He shows polite and thoughtful behavior toward the public, clientele, and supervisor-subordinate relationship into work situations.  This is evident most in a non-populist or non-popular leadership style of immediate superiors or principal.
  • Compassion. Integrates genuine concern for pupils and students, colleagues, office clientele, and supervisor-subordinate relationship into work situations.  The Performance Appraisal System for Teachers calls it Human Relations.
  •  Diligence.  He isn’t merely committed and dedicated but diligent in his/her dealings with the learners.  For the fast and gifted learners, the ability to make learning highly informative, interesting and challenging; for the average learners equally interesting and challenging; and for the mentally challenged learners, encouraging, captivating, and fun.  A diligent teacher doesn’t simply surrenders to whatever kind of learner she might have.
  •  Wisdom.  A teacher, who is full of wit as a result of full understanding of the teaching learning process, indeed is a feather in the cap of the institution of learning she belongs.  Wisdom is gained not only from continuing professional development but more importantly from daily experiences and dealings.
  • Stress Tolerance.  stability of performance under pressure or opposition
  •   Fairness and Justice.  conforms to usual principles of law, is just and unbiased
  • Frugality and Simplicity.  Modestly frugal enough embracing the life of simplicity.  As a teacher, he/she is wise enough to understand the golden purpose of delaying gratification.  The thought of financially independent future while performing the respected responsibilities of a being a teacher borne out of love is among his/her priorities.
Teachers as the bearer of knowledge have all the capacities to overcome all challenges that may beset them.  As an author says, “teacher affects eternity” and some may just never know how.

(Mr. Gilbert M. Forbes had his Bachelors Degree and MA in Educational Management (CAR) from the Philippine Normal University.  A campus paper adviser and trainer for 13 years.  Currently, he is a school principal in one of the central schools in the Division of Quezon.) 
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