Teachers then and now
What was it like to be a teacher in the old days? What’s it like today? And what are the challenges of the future?
These were some of the many questions discussed by three generations of teachers, Amalia Poulsen, Eyðbjartur Skaalum and Hans Jón Thomsen, in a recent radio programme.
The old generation
Having worked as a teacher at Tórshavnar Kommunuskúla from 1969 to 2011, Amalia has experienced many of the recent changes that have shaped the teaching profession.
“We had no project plans, but we certainly had teachers’ meetings, parent-teacher meetings, student parties, excursions and other activities which took up a lot of time for the individual teacher. It was just a natural part of the job,” she says.
The new generation
Eyðbjartur Skaalum graduated from teachers’ college in 2017 and works at the á Argjahamri school in Argir.
“It’s an exciting job. It’s exciting to help shape the next generation. Being a teacher carries with it many responsibilities and it requires a lot from a person. But it is also a very rewarding profession.”
Hans Jón Thomsen is the principal of Hoyvíkar school.
”Faroese schools are better today than they used to be,” he says. “Today, a teacher is required to have skills that go beyond what is taught at the teachers’ college. A modern teacher must be able to regard the pupil as a complete person and to keep a close eye on each pupil’s academic and personal development.”
Thomsen is also calling for improved regulation of teachers’ work hours to ensure that each teacher can manage his or her duties optimally. All three teachers agree on the general direction Faroese schools are taking.
Translated by prosa.fo