Teachers in low-cost schools that serve children from low-income families are usually poorly paid compared to their counterparts in public schools and high-end private schools. During the COVID-19 lockdown, most of these teachers lost their means of livelihoods as most low-cost schools could not afford to pay salaries or could only pay a small percentage. Majority of parents were still owing fees as at the time of school closures as these schools collect fees on daily, weekly and monthly basis. The meagre fees charged as fees do not allow for huge savings for crisis situations as the COVID-19 pandemic.
Teaching is a work of the heart. Our SEED schools responded heroically and while they may be humble operations, the actions of their teachers have been nothing short of extraordinary. Despite the crisis, lack of income and classroom interaction, these outstanding individuals harnessed different ways to reach children and their families, devoted extra time and personal funds to support their communities, and many rediscovered their passion for teaching.
SEED C.A.R.E.S. (COVID-19 Advocacy, Relief, Empowerment & Support) is providing a holistic approach to challenges facing children during the COVID-19 pandemic working from an education ecosystem perspective. Teachers are critical to ensuring learning continues for these children. However, their welfare and professional development is important.
In celebration of Teacher Appreciation Week, the SEED C.A.R.E.S. intervention is rewarding 31 Teachers in the SEED School Network that have gone above and beyond to support children during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The selected teachers will be receiving cash awards, food aid, recognition certificates and other prizes. We will work with the leadership of our schools to identify these teachers.
Teacher Appreciation Week, or National Teacher Appreciation Week, is a week-long celebration in recognition of teachers and the contributions they make to education and society. It is held in the first full week of May of every year and provides an opportunity for students, their parents, and school principals to show their appreciation for the hard work teachers do and the long hours many of them put in. Many educators receive thank you gifts and notes of gratitude and attend events and celebrations to mark the occasion.
As effective teaching usually comes down to teachers’ skills and motivation, we want to reward these teachers that have gone above and beyond in this crisis. Sub-Saharan Africa needs 17 million more Primary and Secondary School teachers by 2030. Currently, more than 70% of countries face acute shortages of Primary School teachers, rising to 90% for Secondary School. We cannot afford to loose the good teachers we currently have due to frustration arising from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the education sector.