Educational International (EI) highlighted the new 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development Goals on Monday, for World Teacher’s Day. Along with its affiliates and partners, EI also recognized the imperative role teachers will play in ensuring the agenda is implemented.
In a joint message signed by UNESCO, the International Labor Organization (ILO), UNICEF, United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and EI, the parties said, “Every year on World Teachers’ Day, we celebrate educators and the central role they play in providing children everywhere with a quality education. Today, as the global community comes together around the new 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals, the role teachers play has never […] been more important.”
The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4, the heart of the 2030 agenda, “calls for inclusive and equitable quality education and the promotion of lifelong learning opportunities for all,” the committee stated.
Cecka Rose Green, a Florida A&M University alumna, member of the FAMU Developmental Research School (DRS) Advisory Board and parent of two students at FAMU DRS expressed her appreciation for the 2030 agenda and opportunities for quality education.
“Initiatives and goals such as this one are needed,” Green said.“A quality education is needed. Setting an agenda to ensure that all students are meeting standards and providing students with tools and opportunities to succeed academically are just the beginning. After that, it’s the parents’ and teachers’ responsibility. Our educators need to be motivated about preparing our students for the future.”
EI and its affiliates believe that the most influential way to achieve the educational goal by the year 2030 is through the investment in recruiting, supporting and empowering teachers throughout the nation.
Today Milford, a senior music education student from Atlanta, Ga., and student teacher at FAMU DRS believes that teachers are not appreciated, but teachers still continue to make sure that students receive the best in education.
“I don’t think we appreciate our teachers until later on in life,” Milford said. “But most teachers, no matter how much they’re undervalued, still try to put forth all the effort they can because, at the end of the day, they know they’re sending the future out into the world. They’re educating the future of the United States. If you don’t […] put your all into it, you’re dishonoring the student.”
Yaisa Howard, an educator in the Wake County Public School System, also expressed her opinion on the role of educators and the need for more teachers.
“Teachers are definitely undervalued. We deal with a lot, not only are we teacher’s, but we’re doctors, nurses, mediators, judges, and parents,” said Howard. “There are all of these professions and people tend to forget that it takes teachers to lead students into these fields. Teaching has now become political and it’s changed what it means to be a teacher. The education system continues to expand classrooms, but how can we really make sure every child is learning at the same pace when we have one teacher teaching over 40 students? We need more qualified and motivated teachers to ensure that students are learning and achieving this goal.”
According to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, an estimated 12.5 million primary teachers need to be recruited to achieve the goal of universal primary teachers by the year 2030. Over four million secondary teacher positions also need to be created to achieve universal lower secondary education by 2030.
By committing to the agenda, it is expected that the supply of qualified teachers would increase substantially.
The goal will be achieved through including international cooperation around teacher training, engaging in dialogue with teachers and their organizations, and intensifying efforts to provide qualified and motivated teachers to every community.