Teaching contests: Performing stage for teachers hinh anh 1Illustrative image (Vietnam +)

Hanoi (VNA) -
Many people think that the contests on “outstanding teachers” should be eliminated because these contests are “stages” for teachers. However, others say these contests help encourage teachers to innovate and be more creative.

Students with poor academic performance being suspend from school when their teachers joined a contest for outstanding teachers in Le Hong Phong Elementary School in Ngo Quyen district, Hai Phong city recently aroused public suspicion about the competition.

Contest on “who can act as outstanding teachers”

It’s true that teaching periods to select outstanding teachers are “show time,” not only in Hai Phong but also in many cities and provinces nationwide.

In Hanoi, a parent revealed her son is a pupil of an elementary school in Hoang Mai district and in an outstanding teacher contest at her son’s school, pupils were asked to raise their hands whenever their teacher asked them questions, with their right hand if the pupil know the answer and left hand if they do not know the answer.

As a judge of outstanding teacher contests for several years, Doctor Vu Thu Huong of the Hanoi National University of Education’s Elementary Education Department said she has witnessed several incidents leaving her not knowing whether to laugh or cry.

“First graders are innocent, when the teacher shows them images, they already know the answer, but the fact is they have not learnt how to read or when the teacher starts the lesson, the pupils all say ‘are we learning the same lesson like yesterday’,” Huong said.

According to Huong, to prepare for a contest, the teacher needs to prepare a lesson for several days with teaching aids to make the lesson effective. However it is only for the contest, not for everyday teaching.

This was also acknowledged by teacher Nguyen Quoc Binh, headmaster of Le Quy Don secondary school, Hanoi. According to Binh, lessons prepared for the contest are well practiced, but not many teachers apply these preparations to daily classes.

“Teachers act, pupils act, and such contests are impractical. We educate pupils about righteousness however all pre-arranged lessons are non-educational and don’t bring any effectiveness, more seriously it can spread deceitfulness among teachers and pupils,” teacher Binh said.                                   

Sharing the same view, Doctor Nguyen Tung Lam, Chairman of the Hanoi Educational and Psychology Association said such competitions do not bring any benefit for teacher and pupils, except for “vain titles”, pressure and stress.

Duong Thi Phuong Thao, a teacher of Mac Dinh Chi secondary school in Ba Dinh district, Hanoi city revealed that she burst into tears while attending an outstanding teacher contest.

 “While other teachers were celebrating an event jubilantly, it was 7 in the evening of November 19. I was alone in my class, preparing for the upcoming contest. I cried, I had never thought that being a teacher was a high pressure and stressful job.”

Teaching contests: Performing stage for teachers hinh anh 2Nguyen Thi Huyen Thao’s teaching period (Photo: Hoang Hai/Vietnam+)

Keeping or abolishing the contest?

Many have said it is necessary to abolish the outstanding teacher contests.

However, Nguyen Kim Anh, a teacher from Phan Huy Chu high school (Dong Da district, Hanoi) said people should have an objective judgment on the contest.

According to her, “There are negative issues in some places which are due to poor organising works”.

Kim Anh participated in many outstanding teacher contests and she won outstanding teacher title at the city level. The teacher said the contest encourages teachers to work harder and be creative.

Teaching contests: Performing stage for teachers hinh anh 3Kim Anh’s teaching period, which is in different method when teacher and pupils learn through playing musical instrument and sing (Photo: Vietnam +)

Will the Ministry of Education and Training introduce adjustments?

Teacher Nguyen Thi Huyen Thao from Tran Dai Nghia gifted high school in Ho Chi Minh agreed that outstanding teacher contests help teachers, therefore they should not be abolished.

At a recent conference on teacher’s pressure, Minister of Education and Training Phung Xuan Nha acknowledged that it is necessary to promote teaching and studiousness movement at schools, but it should be more practical. It is also an issue that the ministry needs to focus, adjust and introduce measures in the 2019 academic year./.