Last night as part of the Global Education and skills forum (@gesfotum known as #gesf) and in a glamorous gathering that had the Ex US president Bill Clinton, Hilary Clinton, Bill Gates, Minister Reem Alhashimi and most important of all Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashed, the winner of the teacher prize was announced and one million dirhams was handed. The gathering signifies the importance of teachers in our lives and how they influence everything we did and will ever do. So when the award was announced last year I thought that I will advertise it as maybe one of my teachers will apply for it!

Not sure how many teachers from around the world had participated as there are over 5 million teachers out there but I know that many had applied and I met a 33 years teacher who was in the top 50.  All I know is that I had fled the social media with the news about the prize and guess what? No Arab teacher had applied for the award. Why?

We do have inspiring teachers! We do have teachers that made us love books or live a certain subject and made an impact on our lives. But they didn’t apply for the award because we at the Arab world are first of all very sceptical! Then we are busy killing each other, having religious conflicts, fighting for our lives and sometimes are living in poverty.  

I think we can start to think of differentiating ourselves when we work on clearing our differences and start to empower people and make them (in the beginning this has to be by force) feel that they are inspiring and they are worth it. Only then that our Arab teachers may enter international awards. 

Thanks the GEMS education for this conference that brings together the best of breed in the education field.