In Eritrea, teachers have for long been playing a vital role in leading and instructing the society on various communal and national issues. During the political and armed struggle for independence of Eritrea, teachers were at the forefront of the struggle at different levels. Eritrean teachers have served as multitasked professionals fighting against ignorance and external violence at once.
Since independence the government of Eritrea has made efforts to improve the quality of education through the development of competent teachers. Remarkable progress has been made to produce adequate and competent teachers that deliver quality education.
In Eritrea, education is a fundamental human right and regarded as essential for the exercise of all other human rights. Education is a liberating, enabling and equalizing agent. It promotes individual freedom and is a critical factor for the development of a country. And teachers play a pivotal role in the provision of education. The educational policy of a country is communicated and implemented by teachers. Through instruction and the transmission of knowledge to students, teachers become a means of implementing various national goals of education. Teachers’ influence and prominence is magnified by their ability to inculcate desirable values and ethics in in the students, there by impacting the society.
Throughout our working lives, we acquire different jobs at different levels. Regardless of the occupation, in order to succeed and move ahead, we need to demonstrate professionalism. Professionalism simply means conducting oneself with responsibility, integrity, accountability, and excellence.
Every calling is great when pursued passionately. Good teachers respect their trusted position in society and recognize their influence on learners and their understanding of the world and the future wellbeing of the society.
Teachers must empower all learners to reach their highest potential by providing high-quality teaching and leadership. Creating a welcoming and caring learning environment is the duty of a professional teacher. Besides teaching, teachers are expected to treat learners with respect and dignity. As professionals they should show integrity by acting in ways that are fair, honest, ethical and just.
The school is one of the most important national institutions for spreading education to the mass, and societies get warmth from the fire of education lighted by teachers in schools. Teachers hold a special social position mainly because of the character they exhibit. Cooperation, humility, sympathy and politeness are bold characters of teachers.
Teachers do not need to speak about themselves because there are millions witnessing their role in shaping and reshaping life. The teaching profession can be considered the mother and father of the rest of the professions. In a way, it can be said that the future of the world is made in the classroom run by a teacher, and the seeds of knowledge being sown today will over time grow and bear fruit. Future presidents, great writers and scientists are sitting today in the classroom to be trained and disciplined by teachers. Although forecasting the future in its entirety is virtually impossible, it can be determined to a good degree by the current performance of teachers. Future social, economic, cultural and political life of a country is in a big way defined by teachers.
A teacher increases the pupils’ knowledge of the world and themselves and helps them to learn skills and technology and its rapid change. A teacher engages in sowing the seeds of knowledge hoping to grow liberty and prosperity in the society. Teachers prepare students for jobs and careers and help them to learn their responsibilities and rights as citizens.
The natural state of human beings is being revised and remolded by social learning. Natural short comings of man are eliminated through learning. A teacher transforms the powerless natural social animal to a powerful, creative and productive human power. Human knowledge is extended through the teaching and learning process. In the patriotic act of nation building, human power plays a crucial role in advancing and guarding national objectives. The teacher, as an educator, plays a great role in empowering humankind.
One of the main duties of teachers is to create a stable state of mind in the society, and the young section of the society in particular, to move the nation on the track of development. Teachers operate within a national framework, which stresses the need for national identity. Every Eritrean teacher needs to demonstrate solidarity with all citizens and share Eritrean values. Education by its nature is rooted in values, and teaching must inevitably reflect the traditions and the implicit or explicit values of Eritrea.
Teaching is both complex and challenging, requiring high standards of professional competence and commitment. For this reason, a teacher should be governed by the standards and ethical principles of the teaching profession.
In today’s world continuous improvement in education is not an option but a necessity and teachers are central to that process. It is self-evident that a high quality of education largely depends on the high quality of teachers.