Teachers'code sparks debate over education faults
Updated: 2011-12-22 14:43
BEIJING - Three drafts of a teachers' code, recently released to solicit public opinion, have been lauded for highlighting problems in teaching methods and divulging the shortcomings of China's education system.
Early this month, the Ministry of Education published on its website drafts of codes for teachers in kindergartens and primary and middle schools. They will be the country's first official documents to define the professional skills and requirements of teachers.
Wang Xiao, an educational expert with Beijing Normal University, said the draft codes have responded to a series of controversial problems in the current education system and also reiterated the standards that constitute a qualified teacher.
In the drafts, an article banning teachers from mocking and discriminating against students has resonated with many people. On Sina Weibo, China's Twitter-like microblog, Internet users have left more than 300,000 posts responding to this article and sharing their experiences of being laughed at by teachers.
"Deliberately mocking students is immoral for a teacher. In many cases, the teacher is simply unaware of the embarrassment or mental pain inflicted upon students when they're reproached," said Nie Yingyun, a head teacher at the NO.9 Middle School in Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu province.
Praise and reproach are useful educational tools, but teachers need to learn how to administer these tools and employ good communication skills, said Du Wendong, a psychology professor at Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine.
"Children are very sensitive to judgment, and even a single word or sentence might irreversibly change their personality. Many teachers fail to realize their strong influence on students," he said.
Du suggests that teachers should receive proper training on how to communicate with children.