We celebrate World Teachers’ Day on 5 October 2022, under the theme: "the transformation of education begins with teachers." Educational transformation will only happen if teachers are professionalized, trained, motivated, and supported to drive the process and to guide their learners to reach their objectives and well-being.
As Humana People to People, we have made a decision to support education as a public common good through investing in teacher training in the countries in the southern hemisphere. The bold decision, made possible by strong cooperation agreements with the national governments, has contributed to an increase in access to education for children who come from disadvantaged geographical settings, mostly remote rural areas.
We value the role teachers play as they are the most important in-school factor when it comes to learning. Teachers must be valued as key agents of transformation in education – and education systems need to transform to support them. Bringing qualified, supported and motivated teachers into classrooms is the single most important thing to support the learning and well-being of students and communities. In many parts of the world, teachers are too few, classrooms are too crowded, and teachers are overworked, demotivated and unsupported. This has negative results on the whole educational experience and its outcomes.
Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4: "Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all" aims to better learning opportunities and outcomes and more equitable and inclusive education for all. SDG target 4.c calls for an increase in the supply of qualified teachers, largely in low-income countries. Teachers are influential in achieving learning outcomes. The achievement of SDG 4 and the transformation of education will depend on well-trained, professionally qualified teachers and efficient and effectively governed education systems.
Over 69 million teachers were needed globally to meet SDG 4 in 2016. To reach the Education 2030 goals, countries in sub-Saharan Africa need to recruit 15 million teachers. Inequitable deployment and distribution of teachers impact teacher-shortages in rural and hard-to-reach locations.
Our Humana People to People Teacher Training programme trains primary school teachers who are determined to teach in rural areas, where teachers are most needed, and who know how to involve children to make them active in their education. We train qualified professional primary school teachers to assume an expanded role not only as knowledge providers but as knowledge producers and sense-makers of complex realities. Our teacher training programme equips teachers with the ability to facilitate learning and help students develop a sense of belonging and responsibility for development of their own communities.
Our Humana People to People teacher training pedagogy is applied together with national curriculums for training of primary school teachers in 49 teacher training colleges located in Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea Bissau, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia and India. Over 57 000 primary school teachers have been trained since 1993 and are professionally practicing in largely rural communities.
Through the efforts of our teacher training colleges, we seek to inspire and complement public education, so that teachers, students, parents, education institutions, education officials and Ministries of Education can draw inspiration from direct and indirect collaboration with our Humana People to People schools and education projects.
We remain committed to continue training professional primary school teachers for the countries in the global south as transforming education begins with investing in teachers! It is a proven investment in social and economic development, supporting efforts in community development and creation of stable societies.