Soufia A. Siddiqi
Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS)
This paper investigates norms, practices and contests that shape public school teaching in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KP) province, Pakistan. Using 16 months of ethnographic data, it traces how teacher-bureaucrats are detracted from, and motivated towards, learning-oriented performance. The comparison of official and lived experiences in teacher policy demonstrates that despite seemingly large political, bureaucratic and legal reform efforts aimed at ‘depoliticising’ teacher quality in KP, decades-long politics of patronage and compliance are still critical mediators of teacher performance. Within these official structures, however, everyday school practice reveals an agency through which teacher-bureaucrats navigate meanings of ‘good’ teaching. By exploring teacher accounts of themselves against the state’s official narratives and expectations of teacher performance, the work draws attention to the importance of teacher voice in understanding the everyday enactment or adaptation of state policy.
Siddiqi, S. 2022. Contested Identities; Competing Accountabilities: The Making of a ‘Good’ Public Schoolteacher in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Research on Improving Systems of Education. PE02. https://doi.org/10.35489/BSG-RISE-2022/PE02