Teachers’ Day 2019: UNESCO calls on governments to make teaching ‘first choice for young people’

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The global community Saturday commemorated the 2019 World Teachers Day (WTD) under the theme: “Young Teachers: The Future of the Profession,” calling on governments to make teaching a profession of first choice for young people. The annual event recognizes the rights and responsibilities of teachers, and provides a platform for governments and individuals to reflect on the challenges faced by teachers as well as promote the noble profession of teaching around the world.

Since 1994, October 5 of every year, is globally observed as World Teachers Day (WTD) dedicated to commemorating the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers by the duo of the International Labor Organization (ILO) and UNESCO, which “sets benchmarks regarding the rights and responsibilities of teachers and standards for their initial preparation and further education, recruitment, employment, and teaching and learning conditions.”

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“With the theme: ‘Young Teachers: The Future of the Profession,’ we recognize the critical importance of reaffirming the value of the teaching mission.  We call upon governments to make teaching a profession of first choice for young people. We also invite teacher unions, private sector employers, school principals, parent-teacher associations, school management committees, education officials and teacher trainers to share their wisdom and experiences in promoting the emergence of a vibrant teaching force,” said Director-General of UNESCO Audrey Azoulay in a joint statement on the occasion of the 2019 World Teachers Day.

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According to a report by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS), the world needs almost 69 million new teachers to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030 Education Agenda adding that global inequalities could directly increase, as 70% of countries in sub-Saharan Africa will face acute shortages of teachers; rising to 90% at secondary level. “Without a new generation of motivated teachers, millions of learners will miss out, or continue to miss out, on their right to a quality education. With teachers being underpaid and undervalued, attracting and retaining talent is a challenge,” noted the statement.

 

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