Education International
Education International

Educators on the march for Quality Education in New Delhi

published 20 September 2014 updated 10 October 2014

12,000 educators from all over India and international guests from the Asia-Pacific region braved the heat in New Delhi, India, this Friday, to march for Quality Education. The rally was one of the worldwide culmination events of Education International's Unite for Quality Education campaign.

The massive show of support for universal access to quality education highlighted this global push to ensure that the United Nations keep a sharp focus on education as it sets new development goals. The teachers are represented worldwide along with some 30 million others by Education International, which has been leading this effort to make sure that quality education for all remains at the top of the agenda for a sustainable, peaceful and prosperous future.

After a year of campaigning by EI affiliates and partners globally, education has been brought back onto the international agenda, and chances are high that education will be a prominent goal of the post-2015 development agenda. The real test for this, however, will come at national level, when countries need to implement the recommendations made at the intergovernmental level.

As an example in India, the Right to Education Act (2009) is a step in the right direction, but much still remains to be done to bring quality teachers to all classrooms and ensure that all children receive the education they deserve.

EI President Susan Hopgood, who addressed the crowds together with leaders of the three national federations of teachers (AIPTF, AISTF, AIFTO), affiliates of EI, said: "There is a worldwide shortage of teachers - here in India alone, there is a shortage of 1.2 million teachers. Governments often resort to employing unqualified teachers, without proper training, to close this gap. But it is not enough to just get children into schools. The quality of education which children receive is vital. That is what we are campaigning for!"

This rally in New Delhi and the many other events across the globe that will take place until World Teachers’ Day, 5 October 2014 - when the campaign will culminate with an electronic lobby effort via the site www.5oct.org- show the large-scale mobilization the education community has achieved over the last year. "We will make sure that the world’s governments will take quality education to the next level," Hopgood concluded.