World Teachers’ Day, an annual event observed on October 5th, is being celebrated this year with a special Google Doodle. The tradition of honoring World Teachers’ Day dates back to 1994.
This day is jointly hosted in partnership with the International Labour Organization (ILO), UNICEF, and Education International (EI). It serves as a commemoration of the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the status of teachers.
The 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation established significant guidelines pertaining to the rights and responsibilities of teachers, along with standards for their initial training, ongoing education, recruitment, employment, and the conditions under which teaching and learning take place. According to UNESCO, in 1997, the Recommendation concerning the status of higher-education teaching personnel was introduced to complement the 1966 Recommendation.
Furthermore, this day not only recognizes the invaluable contributions of teachers in enhancing education but also underscores the support they require to fully utilize their skills and calling. It prompts us to reflect on the future of the teaching profession on a global scale. October 5th serves as a day to celebrate how teachers are shaping the educational landscape and to consider the support needed for them to harness their knowledge and vocational expertise.
The theme for the 2023 World Teachers’ Day is “The teachers we need for the education we want: The global imperative to reverse the teacher shortage.” The 2023 celebrations aim to highlight the urgency of halting the decline in the number of teachers and then working towards increasing their numbers, a matter of paramount importance as stated by UNESCO.
In a joint statement by Ms. Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, Mr. Gilbert F. Houngbo, Director-General of the International Labour Organization, Ms. Catherine Russell, Executive Director of UNICEF, and Mr. David Edwards, General Secretary of Education International, they collectively call upon countries to transform teaching into a more attractive and esteemed profession. This transformation involves recognizing, trusting, and adequately supporting teachers to meet the educational needs of every learner. They advocate for bold actions to reverse the current decline in teacher numbers and to effectively strengthen the teaching profession.