Teachers, specially school teachers, have both academic and non-academic responsibilities to their pupils. Sadly and unfortunately, most people only consider the academic responsibilities. They only want their children's teachers to be the most knowledgeable of the subject matter they are teaching, and also be the best in getting their kids to learn. Non-academic responsibilities, however, are just as important as academic responsibilities. Chances are that 20-30 years from now the non-academic moral lessons learned in the classroom will be remembered more than any academic knowledge.

All parents want their children to have the best teachers. Best here implies that the teacher has the responsibility to be one of the best trained and knowledgeable in his or her subject matter expertise. It also means that the instructor is able to teach skills and facilitate learning just like a coach does in sports. Not every teacher, however, needs to have a Ph.D. or be an expert in the subject he is teaching. Many successful baseball, basketball, and football coaches have not been all-stars. What is important for the teacher is to be a fair, dedicated, and honest motivator and facilitator who can get the most out of his students through concentration, attention to detail, and practice, much like a coach of a sports team.

I wouldn't be afraid to bet that most people remember their favorite teacher in school for the non-academic moral lessons which they got out of the class. Teachers' non-academic responsibilities are so important to students, because many of them spend more time each day with teachers than with parents. At private schools in Thailand many parents dropped their kids off at around 6:30 A.M. and didn't pick them up until 5:00 P.M. or 6:00 P.M. Because teachers spend so much time each day with kids, it is necessary for them to be a parent-like figure and also a role model inculcating moral values.