New Delhi: Using the occasion of Teachers' Day, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday suggested that the dedication and commitment of teachers would be crucial for achieving the objectives of the Right to Education Act which has the potential to transform schools and lives of children.
    
Interacting with a group of meritorious teachers here, Singh noted that teachers have a critical role to play in shaping the future of the country and they should inculcate progressive and rational attitudes among children maintaining a balance between tradition and modernity.
    
He sought to strike a personal chord with the teachers by pointing out that teaching has always been ‘close to my heart’ as he had started his career as a teacher.
   
"The Right to Education legislation that we have enacted has the potential to transform our schools and the lives of our children.”
    
"The implementation of this legislation is not just a matter of providing more resources, it is the dedication and commitment of our teachers that will ultimately help us to achieve its goals and objectives," Singh said.
     
In the coming time, he said, more and more children with diverse backgrounds will enter the school system. "Your challenge therefore will be to work towards a democratic classroom in which all children participate in the learning processes as equal partners," Singh told the teachers.
     
Underlining that teachers will need to ensure that the country's unique cultural heritage is preserved while preparing the children for global citizenship, he said while educating children and young adults, "we must maintain a balance between tradition and modernity."

The Prime Minister, who was interacting with teachers honoured with this year's National Awards, emphasised the need for inculcating in children not only high moral values but also progressive, rational attitudes which enable them to compete with others in on Monday's globalized world.
    
Expressing the government's commitment to provide quality education to all children, he noted that teachers have a very critical role to play in shaping the future of India as they inculcate values in children and inspire them to high ideals of patriotism, communal harmony and commitment to the cause of social justice.
    
"It is they who awaken in children the hunger for knowledge. They have the power to develop in our children the ability to contribute to our society and the processes of nation building," Singh said.
   
"I started my career as a teacher and teaching has always been very close to my heart. I am, therefore, especially happy to have this opportunity to meet the outstanding teachers who are to be honoured on Monday for their meritorious services and contribution to the cause of school education," he said.

(Agencies)