President Kersti Kaljulaid, at the request of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, has taken up the task of leading a high-level UN panel on the teaching profession, along with the former President of Trinidad and Tobago, Paula-Mae Weekes. The initiative’s goal is to propose measures to reduce the global teacher shortage and ensure adequate preparation in today’s world.
“Education has been hit by one crisis after another. Demographic processes, the coronavirus pandemic, the consequences of climate change, and wars have reduced the availability of education and made the teaching profession even more complex. In different ways in different places, but the end goal is the same everywhere,” explained President Kersti Kaljulaid about the background of the panel. “There is a shortage of teachers everywhere, and we are increasingly seeing that the previous preparation and skills of teachers do not meet the challenges of the 21st century.”
The panel collects and offers recommendations on how to ensure a highly trained, qualified, and well-supported teacher for every learner. The panel’s report, to be submitted by the end of November this year, contributes to broader efforts to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 in preparation for the 2024 Summit of the Future, and helps promote follow-up measures of the Education Transformation Summit. In addition to the leaders, the panel has 15+3 members. The list of members can be viewed here: https://press.un.org/en/2023/sga2211.doc.htm.
The panel’s work is supported by the joint secretariat of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO).
At the same time, President Kaljulaid’s two-year role as the Global Advocate of the United Nations Secretary-General for Every Woman Every Child comes to an end.