On the day I took that difficult decision to abandon journalism for education, I knew what I was going into. These two professions have been so dear to me as a person growing up and no wonder I ended up studying journalism (Communication Studies) and now earning a living through teaching. I am into teaching because I feel like giving back to others what others gave me some years back not considering the tedious process of shaping a child’s life and positioning them to be useful citizens tomorrow. I am privileged to serve as Headmaster because someone somewhere positioned me yesterday and I also need to position someone into that position tomorrow.
As head of my institution, sometimes I ask myself so many questions about my role in a child’s life. If one life is so valuable, then what about the hundreds in my care? Everyday, I feel a strong sense of responsibility entrusted upon my shoulders by the nation to prepare tomorrow leaders today. I am grateful because I see myself as occupying a very sensitive position in the lives of these children in shaping what our nation will be tomorrow. In my call to national duty, I have witnessed how difficult it is to build a nation. Sometimes the pain associated with it is enough to send you to your early grave but just like the freedom fighters who won us independence through the toil of their blood, we are also the nation watchers who must toil through our blood to preserve what our fathers fought for.
In my own small community of a school, am exposed through the children to different personalities and the values a nation represent. There are the many who are from poor homes; yet still you have others from well to do homes- I need to mention the single parent children who find life so tough, to the maltreated children whose only light of happiness is the school as they meet their friends who welcome them with smiling faces. Then you have the stubborn ones who tear your intestines apart. You see the intelligent whose strength in studies is simply impeccable and the poor students whose dryness of memory make them struggle with even the common arithmetic lesson. Whether the good or bad; the intelligent or the poor student, they all look to strong leadership to make them worth the status of human beings who have something to showcase and contribute tomorrow.
As I look at their faces every morning, they inspire me to even believe more in them and to strive to make a better learning environment for their future. They are the reason I have not given up in this career that pays so little but comes with the painful stress of changing and shaping attitudes and behaviours. As they stare at me, their innocent eyes like the lesson notes of their teachers reveal their deep desires to catch up with what life has for them. They make me dream of a great nation tomorrow. They make me a better leader and sometimes I fear to betray their trust no matter the attitude they put up.
To many of them, the school is just the beginning of the first step into a great and a bright future and wait on me to point the way to them. They have big dreams to be better people and I also have big dreams to give them a better place to blossom and flourish. As I exchanged the pen for the chalk so I know they will someday exchange love for the self for love for the nation.
I may not be able to hold the hands of the hundreds under my care but I have held enough hands who can also give back some years to come to others. My students are my inspiration tomorrow. They shall give me a better nation in my ageing as I gave them in their childhood. My students shall keep and preserve my memories forever because that shall be the only pay day I may get for my toil. If my reward is in heaven, then let my students be the holders of that book that contains the reward. They shall not forget my lessons. They shall not forget my admonition. They shall not forget that we did it because of Mother Ghana. Thank you Mother Ghana for the opportunity to raise today your children for tomorrow’s national task. It has not been easy but it is worth every single effort and pain. The journey shall continue from here.