Teacher a beacon of education, cultural understanding in Đắk Lắk

Bảy is the sole teacher from Đắk Lắk Province to receive commendation in this year's "Sharing with teachers" Programme.

Teacher Hoàng Thị Bảy (centre) instructs her students. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyên Dung

ĐẮK LẮK — Hoàng Thị Bảy has dedicated 16 years to the education sector, consistently showing devotion to her students.

She teaches at the Lắk District Junior Secondary Boarding School for Ethnic Groups, located in Liên Sơn Town, Lắk District, within the Central Highlands province of Đắk Lắk.

Bảy is the sole teacher from Đắk Lắk Province to receive commendation in this year's "Sharing with teachers" Programme. This initiative is a collaboration between the Việt Nam Central Youth Union, the Ministry of Education and Training, and the Committee for Ethnic Groups.

Second mother

Bảy, reflecting on her childhood aspirations, shared, "No matter who you are, you have the right to dream about your future job. I also had such a dream. That was becoming a teacher of literature."

Her dream materialised when she graduated with a literature major from Quy Nhơn University. Since completing her university studies in 2007, she has been employed at the Lắk District Junior Secondary Boarding School for Ethnic Groups.

The school predominantly educates students from ethnic backgrounds, accounting for over 90 per cent of its enrolment.

A significant challenge in Bảy's role was overcoming language barriers. The students, hailing from diverse ethnic groups, often did not speak the common Vietnamese language, necessitating her to learn and understand their languages.

"I self-studied Ê đê, M'Nông, Thái and Nùng languages, and tried to break down the language barrier by learning about the ethnic groups' cultures. Thanks to that, I found similarities with my students," said Bảy.

H'Wion Sruk, a ninth-grader of the M'Nông ethnic group, said she has been taught by teacher Bảy for four years.

“Although Bảy is very strict, she always cares and loves us like her own relatives,” said Sruk.

“When we first came to school, we didn't know anything. Bảy kindly guided us from folding blankets to growing vegetables to supplement our meals. She always encourages and comforts us whenever we miss home,” she said.

In the Đắk Lắk National Solidarity Ambassador Contest this year, which took place at the end of last month, Sruk was the representative of Lắk District.

Bảy supported and guided her during the examination process.

“Thanks to teacher Bảy’s dedication, I won second runner-up at the contest," Sruk said.

Bảy said that at school, she played many roles in one day, being a mother, a teacher, and a confidant to her students.

“Whenever a student is sick, I’m a doctor, and sometimes a psychologist. Being able to do the job I love, I find each day meaningful," said Bảy.

Teachers’ happiness

As time has passed, numerous student generations have graduated.

Bảy cherishes every aspect of the school - its rows of trees, benches, the schoolyard, and each dormitory room, as they are imbued with memories from her 16 years of close association with the place.

A particularly memorable memory for Bảy dates back 13 years ago, when she intervened to prevent an eighth-grade female student from being forced into child marriage. The student, distressed by her parents' insistence on her leaving school to marry, found an advocate in Bảy.

Initially facing resistance, Bảy's relentless persuasion eventually led the student's parents to relent, allowing their daughter to continue her education.

For Bảy, the greatest joy comes from witnessing her students' determination to overcome poverty and excel in their studies. Her unwavering commitment has been recognised with numerous certificates of merit at various levels.

Nguyễn Thị Thùy Diễm, the Principal of the Lắk District Junior Secondary Boarding School for Ethnic Groups, mentioned that Bảy is the current head of the Science - Society Professional Group. She consistently strives to fulfil her responsibilities with success.

“Bảy is very engaged with the students, arriving early in the morning and staying until late in the afternoon. She sets an exemplary standard and serves as a role model for younger teachers at the school,” Diễm stated.

H'Giang Niê, the Secretary of the Đắk Lắk Provincial Youth Union, acknowledged the challenges faced by Bảy and her colleagues in delivering education in areas populated by ethnic groups. Despite these hurdles, they have accomplished their duties.

“They inspire a passion for learning in students, giving them the motivation to attend school,” she added. — VNS

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