World Teachers Day

World Teacher’s Day or International Teacher’s Day is celebrated every fifth of October, since 1994. It recalls the adoption of international Labour Organisation, ILO/UNESCO concerning teachers’ status.

 Teachers Day set a benchmark regarding the rights and responsibilities of teachers as well as standards to prepare them for further education, employment and recruitment.

The aim of celebrating world Teacher’s Day is to focus on assessing, appreciating and improving educators around the world. It also provides an opportunity to throw light on issues relating to teachers and teaching.

Every year, World Teachers Day is celebrated with a specific theme which focuses on issues which are related to teaching and teachers.

For the year 2019, World Teachers’ Day will celebrate teachers with the theme, “Young Teachers: the Future of the Profession”.  The day will provide modalities to address some of the issues central for attracting and keeping the brightest minds and young talents in the profession.

With the adoption of the sustainable development goal four on education, recognizing teachers as a major key to the achievement of the education 2030 agenda, World Teachers Day therefore became an avenue to mark progress and reflect on ways to counter the remaining challenges for the promotion of the teaching profession.

According to the UNESCO institute of statistics, two hundred and fifty eight million children and youth are not in school.  More worrisome is that over six hundred million children and adolescents, who are enrolled in schools are not learning the basics.

 In both cases, children are being denied the right to a quality education.

Also, in Sub-Saharan Africa, the percentage of newly recruited teachers is still low in most countries, including Nigeria.

In most primary schools in the country, PTA teachers, corps members and NPower, teachers are gradually filling the vacuum created by non recruitment of teachers in schools. More alarming is the low ratio of professional teachers among these set of people, who are taking up the teaching profession on a second thought.

To remedy this learning crisis and to meet SDG goal four on education before 2030, the world needs about sixty nine million new teachers.

Hence, the theme for this year’s World Teachers’ Day goes beyond being a celebration of those who have dedicated their lives to transmitting knowledge and shaping minds, the day is an occasion to shine light on important issues that are affecting the profession and keep teachers at the forefront of the global education agenda.

It is imperative for governments to make teaching a profession of first choice for young people by improving teacher’s condition of service.

Also, Nigeria Union of Teachers, NUT, the private  sector,  school  administrators,  parent-teacher associations,  school  management  committees,  education  officials  and  teacher  trainers  should  share  their  wisdom  and  experience  in  promoting  the  emergence  of  a  vibrant teaching force.

Above  all,  people should celebrate  the  work  of  dedicated  teachers  around  the  world  who continue to strive every day to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and the promotion of lifelong learning opportunities for all. 

Olaolu Fawole

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