Teachers are the heart to quality education and should be empowered, adequately recruited, motivated, professionally qualified and supported. To ensure quality teaching and learning, the education system should embrace continuous professional development, support supervision, career progression and national standards for teachers. Social and policy dialogue mechanisms involving teacher organizations and governments are important aspects of ensuring teacher professionalization. Teachers also have a right to decent working conditions and adequate remuneration. Teachers should have opportunities for peer learning and also work with school leaders and communities, as part of opportunities for professional development. In addressing adequate supply of qualified, motivated and supported teachers at all levels of education, countries commit to achieve target 4c by 2030 as stated below:
Target 4.c: By 2030, substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers, including through international cooperation for teacher training in developing countries, especially least developed countries and small-island developing States
The supply of adequate qualified teachers in the education system is critical to attaining education 2030 agenda. The policy brief outlines the context, situational analysis and policy recommendations. It provides the Arab States with information and strategies that will guide policy makers to determine targets and actions for supply of qualified teachers at all levels of education.
The Arab state region consists of 19 countries that are in four categories: Developed, least developing countries, Mashreq and Maghreb. The developed countries are: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman; The Least Developing Countries (LDC) are; Mauritania, Sudan and Yemen. The category of Mashreq countries are; Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine and Syria. Maghreb includes Algeria, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia.
Since the year 2000, the Arab States Region countries have made considerable progress in achieving the Education for All goals. However, the most significant challenge to progress in education is conflict, which exacerbates inequality, poverty, exclusion and marginalization and in particular access to quality education. In this context, this policy brief analyses and discusses the situation on the supply of qualified teachers at all levels of education in the Arab States Region.
Situation Analysis The areas of focus for target 4c of the education 2030 agenda are qualification, training, motivation, and support for teachers. The indicators for measuring this target are: 1) proportion of teachers qualified according to national standards at each level; 2) proportion of teachers of teachers trained according to national standards at each level; 3) average teacher salary relative to other professionals; 4) teacher attrition rate; and 5) proportion of teachers receiving in-service training.
During the period 1999 to 2011, the number of pre-primary teachers in the Arab States Region increased by 66% to stand at 197,000. During the same period the number of primary and secondary teachers increased by 27% and 15%, respectively. As at 2011, the total number of primary and secondary teachers was 1,931,000 and 2,023,000 respectively.
In 2009, 89.6% of all teachers in the Arab States Region were trained a number which declined to 83.1% in 2013. For primary teachers, 89.8% were trained in 2008, declining to 84.4% in 2013. In lower secondary the proportion of teachers trained 73.6% in 2012 rising to 76.3% in 2013.
Policy Recommendations A set of strategic approaches are proposed to inform actions to deliver and monitor progress towards supply of qualified, trained, supported and motivated in the Arab States Region. The proposed strategies in this target focus on qualification, training, support and motivation.
i. Develop teacher management and standards framework The teacher management policies are to promote inclusive, equitable and gender-sensitive teacher focusing on recruitment, training, deployment, remuneration, career development and working conditions. The policy should integrate continuous improvement of the status of teachers and educators
for quality of teaching and learning. A develop a qualifications framework for teachers, teacher trainers, teacher supervisors and inspectors should also be developed.
ii. Harmonise teacher education programmes The pre-service and in-service programmes should be harmonized and support mechanism pit in place to improve on the quality of teaching and learning. Effective feedback systems should be in place to support good teaching and teachers’ professional development, ensuring that training has a positive impact on teachers’ work.
iii. Integrate ICT in education Provide teachers with adequate technological skills to manage the information and communication technology and social networks as well as with media literacy and source criticism skills and provide training on how to address challenges of pupils with special education needs.
iv. Put in place mechanisms for school management and governance Strengthen school leadership to improve teaching and learning.
v. Institutionalize social dialogue within the teaching force Set up or strengthen mechanisms for institutionalized social dialogue with teachers and their representative organizations, ensuring their full participation in the development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of education policy.