Education International
Education International

Paris: Quality education receives royal recognition

published 7 October 2014 updated 13 October 2014

The worlds of education and monarchy came together today as the UNESCO-Hamdan Prize was awarded to four organisations, including Education International, for their work and commitment to teachers.

On the occasion of World Teachers Day, Education International (EI) and Oxfam Novib were awarded the UNESCO-Hamdan Prize from His Highness, Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Minister of Finance, and UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova.

In his brief comments, Sheikh Hamdan stressed the importance of teachers, saying that “we are fighting poverty in order to improve lives.”

Before royalty, leaders and experts in education, EI General Secretary Fred van Leeuwen and Oxfam Novib Director International Department Aletta van der Woude were called to the stage at UNESCO headquarters in Paris to share the prize for ‘Quality Educators for All: every child needs a good teacher’ for their partner organisations’ shared initiatives in Mali and Uganda.

In her address, Director-General Bokova highlighted the Unite for Quality Education Campaign, which was “spearheaded by our special partner, Education International.” The Unite Campaign, which was launched one year ago at World Teachers Day in Paris and New York, was built upon three pillars: quality teaching, quality teaching and learning tools, and quality teaching and learning environments. “We are falling short of quality,” said Bokova, adding that “we must bridge the global teacher gap.”

The UNESCO-Hamdan Prize for Outstanding Practice and Performance in Enhancing the Effectiveness of Teachers, awarded every two years since 2008 to three winners, was also presented to SOS Villages d’Enfants, Madagascar for the ‘Teacher Training Programme,’ and to ProEd Foundation Panama for the ‘Teachers Teaching Teachers – Professional learning community’ categories.

Together, the recipient organisations share the monetary prize worth $90,000 USD each, or 71,400 EUR. The winners of the prize are chosen based on projects that have made significant contributions to enhancing the quality of teaching and learning through teacher-related activities.