President Jacob Zuma has wished all teachers a happy Teachers’ Day as the world celebrates World Teachers’ Day.
“We honour and value our teachers’ immense contribution and dedication to deliver quality education and shape our future as a nation.
“Let’s continue to support, empower and provide the necessary tools to our teachers in order for them to thrive in their profession. On behalf of government, we wish all our teachers a happy and productive World Teachers’ Day,” said President Zuma on Thursday.
Held annually on 5 October since 1994, the day commemorates the anniversary of the signing of the 1966 United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers.
This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the 1997 UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Higher Education Teaching Personnel, focusing on teaching personnel at institutions of higher education.
As part of the commemorations, Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga will celebrate teachers at the Sheraton Hotel this evening.
This year’s celebration, held under the theme ‘Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers’, echoes the 2015 theme that followed the adoption of the new Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) in September 2015, when teacher empowerment was reaffirmed as a top priority in all education and development strategies of the United Nations.
According to the department, the theme is also in line with government’s 2017 national celebrations in honour of Oliver Reginald Tambo, freedom fighter, lawyer and teacher, who personified the values of a quality educator by promoting the importance of education and the empowerment of teachers.
Limpopo MEC Ishmael Kgetjepe also wished all teachers a happy Teachers’ Day.
“I would like to impress on our teachers that teaching is not just another profession. It is a responsibility to guide, nurture and enlighten. We are thrilled that you have been doing exactly that year in and year out against all odds. We appreciate massively the good work that you get done, even under the most stressful and impossible conditions,” MEC Kgetjepe said.
Teacher Appreciation and Support Programme
The commemoration forms part of the Teacher Appreciation and Support Programme (TASP), which is a joint effort between the department and the South African Council of Educators (SACE) that aims to lift the morale of teachers.
Launched on 31 August 2015, TASP includes year-long build up activities to World Teachers’ Day by seeking to encourage involvement at all levels, including that of social partners, districts and schools.
The aim of TASP is to support the Education 2030 Framework for Action by developing and celebrating South African teachers throughout the year, giving meaning to the department’s motto, ‘The teacher, the heartbeat of the nation’. – SAnews.gov.za