This post is the tenth in a blog series published in 2019 in the context of a collaboration between the Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) and the Global Partnership for Education (GPE).
Held annually on October 5 since 1994, World Teachers’ Day commemorates the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers.
This Recommendation sets benchmarks regarding the rights and responsibilities of teachers and standards for their initial preparation and further education, recruitment, employment, and teaching and learning conditions. The Recommendation concerning the Status of Higher-Education Teaching Personnel was adopted in 1997 to complement the 1966 Recommendation by covering teaching and research personnel in higher education.
With the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 on education, and the dedicated target 4.c recognizing teachers as key to achieving the Education 2030 Agenda, World Teachers’ Day has become the occasion to mark progress and reflect on ways to address the remaining challenges facing the teaching profession.
Obstacles that hinder teachers’ performance
Teachers face a number of challenges, ranging from classroom experiences such as methods of teaching and of assessing teaching to student behavior, competence in using foreign languages as a medium of instruction and teaching all subjects regardless of whether one is competent in teaching them. Other problems include negative perceptions about the profession, few opportunities for in-service training and advancing one’s career, and poor working conditions.