A teacher for life

Updated: 2013-05-07 13:49

By Li Yang (China Daily)

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A teacher for life

Photo by Deng Keyi / for China Daily

Pan cooks the "free lunch" for the students at school every day, a project sponsored by the State that gives each student a 3-yuan lunch subsidy, making him more like a father than a teacher to the lonely kids.

Pan tries to inspire the students with awards, a pencil, a notebook or little snacks. "These children are very poor. I have to make up for their loss of family education and help them develop their character and sense of responsibility and teamwork," he says.

It takes the children an hour and a half to travel to school in the morning. Pan often returns home with them after school. To make sure they have enough strength to go home, Pan cooks porridge for them in the afternoon.

He refuses to be transferred to other schools, because the children in the three villages would have to go to the school in the center of town. It is too far to travel and too expensive for many of the children to board there. Pan says if he retires, some of these students will drop out of school.

"I never miss a class and will work here until the end of my life. This is a promise to my wife's father and my middle school headmaster. No soul deserves to be wasted."

In 2007, to avoid missing his classes and save money for his family, Pan treated his serious lumbar vertebrae hyperostosis with medicine, ignoring the doctor's advice to undergo an operation, resulting in serious damage to his right leg.

The interview is finished before noon. Pan hurriedly hobbled his way back home along the bumpy lane to feed his sick wife and mother.

A teacher for life

A teacher for life

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