Society does not view the teacher as a person with the future of the child in hand, declares Rachel Molokeng of Soweto, South Africa, one of the five teachers featured on this video who carry on doing their job in spite of violence poverty or armed conflict.
Along with her pupils, 80 per cent of whom are orphans, Rwanda teacher Thea Uwinbabazi is slowly putting her life together again after the genocide of 1994 which eliminated half her country's teachers. Yet Thea earns half what a labourer earns.
To make ends meet, Mongolian teacher Urthnasan Tserendozhiin has to sell fruit in the market after school. I would be sorry to leave teaching, he says. But with a monthly salary worth the price of a cheap pair of shoes, this seems inevitable.
From Cesarina Santana in her fortress-like school in the Bronx, where pupils have first-hands experience of drugs and AIDS, to Dalila Terzi in her multicultural school in a Paris suburb, while deploring an almost universal lack of recognition of their profession.
This video is a tribute to their dedication and commitment.
Place/country: Brazil, France, Haiti, Lao PDR, Mongolia, Niger, Palestine, Rwanda, South Africa, United States of America,
Credits: Antoine Casubolo (director) Valérie Tibet (director) UNESCO Publishing (publisher) TV5 (co-producer)
Published in: 1997
Library catalogue (UNESDOC): 187343