Rabat (UNA-OIC) – In recognition of teachers’ crucial position and roles and in a bid to highlight their noble mission, the Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) celebrates World Teachers’ Day, observed annually on 5 October.
In a statement today, ICESCO said World Teachers’ Day is a suitable occasion for highlighting teachers’ achievements and putting forth forward-looking visions to promote their roles, not only to develop the educational process and ensure its quality but also to improve societies and build great human civilizations.
The fourth development goal is undoubtedly a key goal that seeks to ensure equitable and inclusive quality education for all. However, such an objective cannot be attained without the pivotal role of qualified teachers who can shape creative and innovative minds. The vital role of teachers glaringly materialized during the COVID-19 pandemic as they fought to mitigate the impact of the health crisis on the educational process. Against this backdrop, competent parties must empower teachers, provide them with adequate professional qualification and training, accord due attention to their well-being, and offer incentives as well as material, moral and psychological support.
Anticipating the future of education in the post-COVID-19 context foretells that schools will inevitably change, and they will be replaced by digital schools of the future. This change compels us to invest in teacher training to build their skills and capacities to keep pace with technological and educational advancements. The teacher of the future needs skills to deal with crises, proactive future thinking, critical and creative thinking, teamwork, learning, evaluation, follow-up, remote communication using modern technologies and AI applications.
On World Teachers’ Day, ICESCO reiterates its call for guaranteeing the right to education and achieving quality, equitable and inclusive education for all, by focusing on marginalized groups, especially girls and women, who are at the heart of ICESCO’s concerns and the motive for proclaiming 2021 as the Year of Women. It is high time for all governments and competent parties to shoulder their responsibilities and assumes their roles towards teachers, through providing training opportunities, ensuring their safety and good health, and improving their working, living and social conditions. All these measures would most likely encourage teachers to give more, work harder and contribute more effectively to the promotion of educational systems.
Hence, ICESCO calls for more investment in modern technologies, employing artificial intelligence applications in the educational process, and attaching great importance to training teachers to use them. In conjunction with this celebration, the Organization launched the ICESCO Prize for Open Digital Educational Resources in Service of the Continuity of the Educational Process, which aims to secure the continuity of educational services by capitalizing on ICTs, encourage educational innovation and competitiveness, and highlight the competencies and creative abilities of various educators.