IICBA participated in the Southern Africa Regional Meeting on Teacher Standards and Competencies held in Lusaka, Zambia from 14-15 June, 2017

No matter how many professions there are in society, one stands out clearly and indisputably as the mother of the other professions, and that is teaching.

The Southern Africa Regional Meeting on Teacher Standards and Competencies, organized by UNESCO Regional Office of Southern Africa (UNESCO ROSA) in partnership with the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Secretariat and the Government, was held in Lusaka, Zambia from 14-15 June 2017. IICBA, represented by Senior Programme Specialist, Mr. Omar Diop, took part in the meeting. Mr. Diop provided support in the shaping of a Regional Framework on Teacher Standards and Competencies for the SADC countries.

Teacher Standards are one key dimension and are considered crucial to any comprehensive teacher policy. Following the progress towards a Regional Framework on Teacher Standards and Competencies, this meeting was designated: (1) to share country practices on teacher standards and competencies and explore modalities for harmonizing and consolidating SADC member country competence frameworks into a regional Teacher Competence framework; (2) to identify elements to be included in a Regional Teacher Competence Framework; and (3) to agree on a roadmap for finalizing and implementing a Regional Teacher Competence Framework.

Mr. Diop gave a presentation at the meeting titled "Africa Context: Progress towards Teacher Standards". He introduced the concept, purposes and categories of teaching professional standards, as well as producing examples and cases from African countries. "Professional practice standards should be seen as necessary action by all African countries to place not just its teaching profession but the nation on the path to growth and development," he emphasized.

Target 4.c of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4) and the Education 2030 Framework for Action (Education 2030), focuses explicitly on the teacher challenge: to substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers. Similarly, the AU Agenda and the Continental Education Strategy for Africa (CESA 16-25) calls for “the revitalisation of the teaching profession to ensure quality and relevance at all levels of education”.

As the coordinator of Teacher Cluster of CESA 16-25 and expressing UNESCO’s commitment in capacity building in Africa, IICBA will keep providing technical support for teacher and policy development in Africa.