UNESCO study shows Africa and Arab States are worst hit by teacher shortage

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Literacy class in a religious school, in Ethiopia. UNESCO/Dominique Roger

One point six million additional teachers will be required to achieve universal primary education by 2015, and this number will rise to 3.3 million by 2030, according to a report published by UNESCO's Institute for Statistics (UIS) on the occasion of World Teachers Day, to be celebrated on 5 October.

The report also shows that a total of 3.5 million new lower secondary education positions will have to be established by 2015 and 5.1 million will be required by 2030. This is the first time that UIS projections extend to 2030 and include data on lower secondary education.

About 58% of countries currently do not have enough teachers in classrooms to achieve universal primary education. While the problem concerns all regions of the world, the situation in Sub-Saharan Africa is particularly bad.

Close to one third of the countries suffering from teacher shortages are situated in that region and the need to recruit more teachers will intensify due to the growth in the number of school-age children on the continent. By 2030, 2.1 million teaching positions will have to be created in Sub-Saharan Africa over and above the 2.6 million teachers leaving the profession who will need to be replaced.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’13″

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