10.9 million primary-school teachers needed by 2020

Every year on October 5, UNESCO highlights the importance of teachers as they work tirelessly to educate the world

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Not enough resources are being given to the education of children in their formative years

UNESCO is honoring one of the world’s hardest-working professions with World Teachers’ Day on Monday, placing a spotlight this year on those who specialize in early childhood education (ECE).

Globally, ECE is a field often mired by poor training, staffing and funding. Worldwide, the UN estimates that by 2020, countries will need to recruit a total of 10.9 million teachers to keep up with the demand.

World Teachers’ Day will kick off with a round-table discussion about the problems that plague education around the world at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris and ECE will lead the agenda, according to UNESCO.

There will be particular emphasis given to the lack of resources allocated to ECE in the developing world, where, UNESCO says, there are “equity gaps in access and learning which mostly affect the poorest regions and schools and the earliest grades.”

This year’s celebration will also focus on the Education 2030 initiative, launched in conjunction with the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in an effort to promote sustainable and healthy teaching environments.

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