Each year on 5 October since 1994, the whole world celebrates the World Teachers’ Day to commemorate the anniversary of the signing of the 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers. This is to acknowledge the services of all the teachers out there who are trying to build educated nations for centuries.
Education is the tool to transform lives. It has also been adopted as the UN SDG 4. Teachers are the driving force to transmit the knowledge to the nations. Without teachers, a fundamental human right of getting primary and secondary education cannot be met.
This year the theme of WTD is “The right to education means the right to a qualified teacher” focuses to mark the importance of trained and qualified teachers. The basic right of getting an education cannot be achieved when we don’t have the trained and qualified teachers to transmit the knowledge.
There is a shortage of teachers worldwide. According to a report of UNESCO, there are almost 264 million children and youth still out of school and the world needs to recruit almost 69 million new teachers to meet the SDG 4 and target 4c by 2030.
In developed countries, this is not a major issue, but for the countries with less resources and shaggy economic condition, this could be a challenging situation to recruit the qualified and trained teachers. There is no confusion in this fact that when the teacher is not properly qualified and trained to handle the various ongoing educational circumstances, the learning process suffers. A student’s raw mind can be transformed into a useful one if teacher is competent.
The pay structure for teachers in many countries is also a main reason for the teachers’ shortage. Many countries recruit teachers on temporary contracts paying not enough salary, so qualified teachers hesitate to join those institutes. Some organizations also recruit teachers for temporary basis having no pedagogical knowledge and training and it is then when the learning suffers.
To respect the core values of a teacher also plays a vital role in bringing qualified educators to the schools. There must be professional freedom, decent working conditions, and sufficient remunerations.
The teachers also have got some responsibilities such as to provide high-quality instructions, helping children to cope with the new situations and to equip them with decision-making techniques to improve their wellbeing.
This day demands from all the countries to track the recruitment criteria both in public and private educational institutes so the right to a trained and qualified teacher can be met.
Famous American Poet Robert Frost said, “I am not a teacher, but an awakener”.
By: Muhammad Tahir Naeem Khan