On the occasion of World Teachers’ Day 2019, UNESCO in partnership with the Ministry of Human Resource Development, United Nations Global Compact, International Chamber for Service Industry and the International Task Force on Teachers for Education 2030, organized a Regional Consultation to Develop an International Guidance Framework for Professional Teaching Standards with a focus on Asia and the Pacific region in New Delhi, from 9 to 11 October 2019.
The Regional Consultation foremost gained inputs from more than 150 participants and took stock of implementation levels in teaching standards across countries, including Nepal, Bhutan, Thailand, Indonesia, Nigeria, Tokyo, Chile and many others. A diverse stakeholder base of teachers, teacher organizations, education planners, teaching regulatory councils, policymakers and researchers, helped in making the evolving framework locally adaptable.
A well-trained and qualified teaching workforce is a key to driving other educational sector reforms like reigning in drop-out rates, better quality of education, and educational outcomes. A set of professional teaching standards ensures that teachers are aware of what is expected from them and administrators have a framework for ease of appraisal. By standardizing teaching methods, the consultation hopes to serve as a mechanism for quality assurance and good governance.
“Teachers are one of the most influential and powerful forces for equity, access and quality in education and key to sustainable global development”, said Eric Falt, UNESCO New Delhi Director, in his opening address.
“There is a paradigm shift in the learning process everywhere, therefore it should be there in teacher learning too”, said Dr. Hrushikesh Senapaty, Director, National Council of Educational, Research and Training, while addressing the participants.
The ultimate goal of the consultation was to standardize the teaching methods across different regions, thus serving as a mechanism for good governance and quality assurance. In doing so, it attempted to address three related factors namely, reaching a common understanding of teaching and teacher quality; describing competency levels for the different stages in a teacher’s career to assure teacher education quality; and spelling out governance and accountability mechanisms for effective implementation.
The outcome of the consultation process will be in the form of two reports, one will have consolidated findings of the Regional Consultation and the expert group review, and the second will include mechanisms to better articulate the work of the Teacher Task Force and its relations to UNESCO and its regional counterparts.