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  • 05.10.2020
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2020 World Teachers' Day fact sheet

Teachers are the cornerstone on which we build inclusive, equitable, quality education. The COVID-19 pandemic has substantially compromised teachers’ capacity to maintain education quality due to...
Event
  • 19.10.2021

9th AFTRA Teaching and Learning Conference & 11th Rountable

Africa Federation of Teaching Regulatory Authorities (AFTRA) hereby announces its 9th International Conference & 11th Roundtable on Unpacking Teaching and Learning in Africa for Excellence.

AFTRA is the intergovernmental organisation of the Ministries of Education and National Agencies regulating Teaching in the 55 Member States of the African Union. Working with the Education Division of the African Union Commission, UNESCO-International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (IICBA) Education International Africa Region, UNESCO Regional Offices, Teacher Task Force, Education International, and other international organisations, AFTRA serves as the hub for articulation and implementation of key policies and initiatives driving Teaching and Learning in Africa. The International Conference and Roundtable, therefore, are annual continental landmarks that draw speakers, delegates and participants from Africa and other regions of the world.

SPECIAL GUEST OF HONOUR H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo President of the Republic of Ghana

CHIEF HOST Hon. Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, MP. Minister of Education, Ghana

HOSTS Ministry of Education, Ghana; National Teaching Council; National Inspectorate Board; Ghana Education Service; Ghana National Association of Teachers; Coalition of Concerned Teachers; National Association of Graduate Teachers; & others.

The conference will be online and physical.

For more information, please visit: http://www.africateaching-authorities.org/

Photo: AFTRA Conference in 2019

Blog
  • 01.10.2021

Assisting teachers to support learning recovery: understanding learning loss and learning gains during Covid-19 school closures

Authors: Anna Riggall*, Elnaz Kashefpakdel*, Ella Page*, Susy Ndaruhutse*, Sonia Guerriero**, and Rosie Leonard-Kane*.


Covid-19 caused considerable disruption to education around the world, with disadvantaged and marginalised learners particularly hard-hit. Early into the pandemic, the focus was on access - the goal was to ensure that students had access to education so that learning continued. With the new normal of schooling established, whether it is in-person, remote, fully digital, low-tech, or a mix of alternating approaches, the focus now is on learning recovery. Teachers will be at the heart of this recovery. They will be tasked to respond not only to students’ deepened academic losses (and possibly some gains), but also to their socio-emotional wellbeing.

To assist governments, schools, and teachers in learning recovery, Education Development Trust and UNESCO are collaborating on a research initiative to explore what can be learned from Covid-19 and previous crises and what knowledge gaps remain. This is a long-term collaboration that began with a first phase that synthesized what we currently know and do not know; a second phase of field-based data collection to addresses identified knowledge gaps; a third phase to implement a teacher support intervention; and a final fourth phase to explore its impact and efficacy.

What have we learned since the beginning of the pandemic and what knowledge gaps remain?

The first phase of work resulted in three reports – a rapid evidence assessment (REA), a review of policy and literature, and a summary paper summarising key gaps in knowledge. Several key findings emerged:

  1. There is consensus about the types of interventions that may support learning recovery. These include tutoring schemes, catch-up programmes, accelerated education programmes, and a condensed curriculum. The evidence available now suggests these types of actions show promise, but more evidence is needed to help us understand how and under what conditions they work most effectively.
  2. Measuring learning loss (or gain, which is far less common), is complex. Projections and early data are cause for worry. Moving forward, it will be important to help education systems understand learning losses (or gains) at the individual student level and then to respond appropriately. Another important dimension to consider is whether ‘instructional loss’ would make a more valid measure. This refers to the instructional time and opportunities missed due to school closures - including when remote provisions were (or where not) put in place.
  3. Evidence suggests the effectiveness of complementary initiatives and the recognition of alternative pathways to support learning recovery. These include nonformal education initiatives delivered in the community, not as standalone programmes distinct from school, but as part of the formal offer of education. Fast-track, second-chance opportunities to complete formal education can enable disadvantaged children and youth to catch up with other students.
  4. The use of digital technologies for remote and online learning shows great potential. However, technology-based solutions and school closures exacerbated an already existing digital divide and led to learning loss across the world, especially in low-income countries. There is the need to explore how to effectively scale-up low-cost digital solutions, as well as low-tech solutions, such as radio, television, and mobile phones, to tackle uneven access to technology and connectivity.
  5. The evidence also points to the need for mental health-focused initiatives, as well as supporting teachers themselves back into classroom work. We do not currently know a great deal about how such initiatives might work, as evidence is limited.

The evidence assessment identified important data and knowledge gaps by investigating three overarching questions on how best to support teachers in learning recovery:

table 2

Despite shortcomings in the literature, some clear learnings are gained based on the views of stakeholders and from previous disruptions caused by crises and natural disasters. Something that is truly undeniable is the effective role teachers played in maintaining students’ engagement with education and mitigating the risk of complete disengagement with education. Throughout the review, the challenges of switching to remote learning is acknowledged. Digital literacy and curriculum design, learning assessments, workload, student safety and duty of care, and responding to the psychosocial demands of students were among the main problems teachers had to cope with. Although evidence is limited, a few approaches were highlighted by the literature to respond to these needs, including tailored training programmes, peer-to-peer learning, crash courses on digital upskilling, and counselling.

In the second phase of this collaborative research initiative, Education Development Trust and UNESCO will explore these and other questions through field surveys to gather the perspectives of teachers themselves. The main focus will be on gaining a deeper understanding of:

  1. Governments’ plans for school reopening and learning catch-up in selected countries, and the expectations from schools and teachers. The research will compare across various definitions of catchup programmes – from policy perspectives to scientific or academic definitions – to identify (mis)alignment.
  2. Tools and mechanisms to ensure teachers are prepared for successful recovery. The research will seek to further our understanding of what (if any) support teachers have already received, and what (if any) instruction, re-orientation, or upskilling teachers have received prior to going back to school, as well as assessing teachers’ needs in terms of support and training to ensure impactful catch-up programme implementation and social and emotional wellbeing.
  3. The roles of intermediaries, such as teachers’ associations, in-service, and pre-service education providers, in delivering support for teachers to better enable them to face the challenges of school reopening, learning catch-up and assessment, as well as promoting teachers’ social and emotional wellbeing.

The findings of the second phase are expected in early 2022. 


The designations employed and the presentation of material throughout this article do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of UNESCO and the International Task Force on Teachers for Education 2030 concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. The ideas and opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors; they are not necessarily those of UNESCO and do not commit the Organization.

Photo credit: Education Development Trust


*Education Development Trust - member of the Global Education Coalition, a multi-stakeholder and cross-sector cooperation established by UNESCO in March 2020 to support countries in learning continuity efforts.

**UNESCO

Event
  • 01.10.2021

Always present: Paying tribute, taking action

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken an enormous toll on education. Beyond school closures and lost learning, countless educators, union members, and leaders of our profession have died. The losses are staggering. Every day we receive notices from around the globe of colleagues who are no longer with us.

The death of one educator is a tragedy for their family, students, and community. The death of so many educators around the world has an absolutely devastating impact on the profession and education as a whole.

Teacher memorial

In the lead up to this year’s World Teachers’ Day – October 5th, 2021 – Education International has launched a memorial website to honour and remember the colleagues we have lost - www.teachercovidmemorial.org. Please use the website to share the stories of friends, colleagues, mentors who have passed away during the pandemic. We want to remember their names and pass on their legacy.

Tribute event

This World Teachers’ Day, Education International will host a global tribute event in their honour. On October 5th we will come together to honour those we lost and who are forever present as we carry out their legacy and celebrate their life’s work, their dedication to their students, colleagues and their profession. We will commit ourselves to taking their mission forward as we organise for better working conditions and vaccine equity.

Register at www.teachercovidmemorial.org/tribute-event/ and join us on October 5th from 1 p.m. CEST. The event will feature interpretation in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Portuguese and Russian.

Event
  • 23.09.2021

Unlocking Teachers’ Innovation to Drive Educational Recovery

Around the world, teachers responded to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic by innovating both in person and in virtual classrooms. However, to be able to continue innovation to support education recovery, teachers need an environment that values the autonomy and leadership necessary to seize opportunities to depart from established practice.

This international webinar is part of the global celebrations to mark World Teachers’ Day 2021. The event will showcase innovations in teaching and learning fostered by individuals and organizations. This will include projects from the UNESCO-Hamdan Prize which celebrates innovative capacity to support teachers. It will also highlight some of the main findings and powerful examples from the open crowdsourcing of teachers’ insights and innovations during the pandemic, which was led by the OECD, UNESCO and the Teacher Task Force in early 2021 through the OECD’s Global Teaching InSights platform. It will aim to also examine the environments and policies necessary to ensure that these innovative practices continue even after in-person schooling resumes.

Join us to celebrate teacher innovations this World Teachers' Day!

Please register here.

Photo credit: Mukesh Kumar Jwala/Shutterstock.com.

Event
  • 23.09.2021

Financing teachers and teaching in the post pandemic recovery

To mark the global celebrations for World Teachers’ Day, ActionAid, UNESCO, the Teacher Task Force and Education International are collaborating to organize a 90-minute webinar, Financing teachers and teaching in the post pandemic recovery on the 8th October 2021 at 9:00-10:30 GMT to highlight:

  • The importance of safeguarding financing to education and investing in teachers and the education workforce
  • Strategies and measures governments can take to ensure adequate financial allocations are made to ensure enough teachers are recruited, deployed, remunerated and supported
  • Ways teachers themselves can play a more active role in the decision-making process at national/decentralized levels

The webinar will bring together civil society representatives teachers/teacher union members and  government representatives, to discuss and debate issues based on existing and emerging research evidence.

Speakers include representatives from:

  • Action Aid
  • Nigerian Teachers Union
  • Ministry officials from Burkina Faso, Malawi and Nepal
  • TaxEd Alliance
  • UNESCO
  • Education International

With closing remarks from UNESCO’s Assistant Director-General for Education, Stefania Giannini.

Please register here.

Photo credit: © European Union, 2021 (photographer: Olympia de Maismont).

Event
  • 22.09.2021

SEAMEO-UNESCO-TTF-IITE Experts Forum & SEAMEO WTD e-Festival: Celebrating World Teachers’ Day 2021

One and a half years into the COVID-19 crisis, World Teachers’ Day 2021 will focus on the support teachers need to fully contribute to the recovery process under the theme of ‘Teachers at the Heart of Education Recovery’

The COVID-19 pandemic has posed significant challenges for teachers and led to enormous pressure on teachers. The educational disruptions and school closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have confirmed the crucial role of teachers in maintaining learning continuity, but also in sustaining the very dynamics of households, families and communities.  

This SEAMEO-UNESCO-TTF-IITE Experts Forum and SEAMEO WTD e-Festival: Celebrating World Teachers’ Day 2021 will celebrate the values of teachers on the World Teachers’ Day during this pandemic. In the discussion participants will learn:

  • Good practices on teacher-related policies on COVID-19 recovery
  • Current issues of teachers, and institutional strategies for resilience-building in the post-COVID world
  • Zero-investment innovative and practical ideas for successful recovery, resilience-building, and reimagining education in the post-pandemic world from the outstanding video clips shared by teachers from Southeast Asia.

Pre-registration is required here. The deadline of registration is on Sunday 3 October 2021. 

For more information and the agenda, please click here.