UNESCO partners with GEMS Education to bolster teacher training
UNESCO and GEMS Education, owner and operator of over 100 international schools worldwide, have joined forces to tackle looming teacher shortages in developing countries. Under the partnership, UNESCO and GEMS will implement teacher training programmes that also promote girls’ and women’s education.
“Well-trained and motivated teachers are the key to achieving universal primary education by 2015,” said UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova. “UNESCO estimates that 1.9 million new teachers will be required annually until 2015, to meet global needs. More than half of them will be needed in sub-Saharan Africa.
“UNESCO’s data also shows that some 60 percent of the 67 million out-of-school children are girls. If we want to get all children, including those girls, into school by the target date of 2015, we need to recruit and assign well-trained teachers, who understand the importance of girls’ education. One way of accelerating this will be to encourage more women to join the teaching profession. These are the objectives we have set for this new partnership.”
“Teachers create the leaders of tomorrow and I firmly believe that they are the real nation builders,” said founder and Chairman of GEMS Education, Sunny Varkey. “This partnership is an example of GEMS offering the experience and expertise of our world-class educationists to influence how teachers are trained globally. GEMS is also establishing teacher training colleges in India and the United Arab Emirates.”
UNESCO is working with priority countries to accelerate progress towards Education for All. The partnership will also focus on these countries, with projects that increase the numbers of women in teacher training institutions, and encourage the recruitment of women to leadership positions in education.
This is in line with UNESCO’s two top priorities, Africa and gender equality.