October 5th is World Teachers’ Day, a day to celebrate teachers across the globe and promote our profession to the public. The theme for this year’s celebration is “The Right to Education Means the Right to a Qualified Teacher”.
In many parts of the world, our profession is being devalued by governments and private enterprises who believe that anyone can receive minimal training and step into a teacher’s role in the classroom. This is a disservice to all students, who deserve a qualified, quality teacher to guide them in their learning. For-profit education models do not support the investment required in attaining degrees and developing professional development opportunities for educators.
Unfortunately, we do not have to look outside our own territory of Nunavut to see the push for placing unqualified, undertrained people into our classrooms. The current crisis in teacher vacancies has led the Department of Education to openly advertise, both North and South, for uncertified people to work in numerous communities. Meanwhile, recruitment of Inuit teachers and university graduates remains woefully underfunded and strategically flawed. Retention rates of teachers are low, and not being addressed appropriately by the Department. There is also little movement on assisting unqualified teachers currently in our system attain the training they need to be certified with a Bachelor’s of Education degree. The Government of Nunavut can, and must, do better for our current members and our students.
The NTA is proud to stand up for the right of each child in Nunavut to have access to qualified teachers.
Thank you for your service to our students and our communities.
Nunavut Teachers’ Association