Saturday 5 October was World Teachers’ Day and many member schools of the Federation of Governing Bodies of South African Schools (Fedsas) hosted a variety of projects at schools to celebrate the work of teachers.
According to Dr Jaco Deacon, Deputy CEO of Fedsas, this year’s theme is “Young teachers – the future of the profession”.
“Fedsas cannot overemphasise the importance of this statement. As with many professions, education is also developing a gap with experienced teachers retiring, which means we have to encourage young people to enter the profession,” said Deacon.
He also underlined that the status of education as a career should be restored. “Education should be a first-choice career for top students. And this will require a team effort between tertiary institutions responsible for training teachers and the broader society who should value teachers for the work they do. Education as career cannot be a last resort.
“As long as teachers have to cope with less than the bare essentials in classrooms and often also fear for their safety, promising young people will not enter the profession.”
Deacon said this is why Fedsas is focused on equipping governing bodies to create a school environment that promotes quality education.
“Teachers’ only job should be to work with learners in classrooms. It is the duty of the rest of us, the role-players in the school community, to see to it that this environment is created and maintained.”
Fedsas is calling on all South Africans to celebrate the teachers, both young and old, who made a difference in their lives. On social media the hashtag #ThankyouTeacher can be used.