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World Teachers' Day 2013

By Paul Robinson - 05 Oct 2013 4:1:0 GMT
World Teachers' Day 2013

The 2013 logo implies a call to and for teachers worldwide. There's a desperate shortage, even in most developed countries. I wonder why? WTD image; Credit: © UNESCO

When they search for the oldest profession, sometimes the research is biased. In fact it's the humble but all-important teacher. Revered as a fount of knowledge in several countries and decried as inefficient and outdated in others, the demonstrating educator was probably one of the first functionaries within any social system. What is needed now is appreciating, assessing, and improving their own levels of delivery. The competence of this workforce, too, is strongly connected to their motivation.

Only since 1994 has the world come together to realise that teaching is lacking in so many regions of the world. UNESCO realised then, just a little late, that in 1966, the International Labour Organisation (ILO), along with UNDP, UNICEF and themselves had instigated a suitable and significant set of standards and a statement on the status of teachers. The needs of some countries for primary education overshadow the shortage of other qualified technical and language teachers still.

These teachers of course are often members of the local population, and not strictly-speaking, lifelong teachers. With the aim of Universal Primary Education by 2015 being increasingly threatened, millions of new teachers need to be found. Whether mature people or younger "life-long teachers," they need to be encouraged, otherwise that teaching life will be short, as it already is in many countries.

Future generations are the key to any nation's success and development solutions.100 countries observe World Teachers' Dayand EI, Education International, is a non-commercial organisation that tries to spread that recognition to the public. If you want past famous figures who have taught, take Ataturk and Socrates, who managed the enlightenment of the Turkish people and Alexander the Great respectively. There are of course, many thousands more!

Whether education will decline or challenge, nurture and provide opportunity for young people is the key argument. We all care, but few can do anything about the future of our countries and our earth. Teachers, lecturers, instructors and all other educators need to lead us. The Day is theirs.