Elementary teacher writing arithmetic on blackboard, rear view

In many countries, including Armenia, Canada, Germany and Russia, October 5 is designated as “teacher appreciation day”.

How can we best appreciate our teachers? Bringing them flowers or some other gift on October 5 is a good start. Giving them “teacher’s day” financial bonuses could possibly make them even happier, especially in Armenia where teachers are underpaid. Increasing their salaries will send them an even stronger message that their work is valuable.

Yet, such gestures do little to motivate teachers or enhance the educational system.

We cannot truly appreciate teachers without recognizing the importance of education and their critical role in making it effective.

A well educated population is the essential ingredient for economic development and healthy democracy. Education is the best gift one can give a child. An effective educational system is the best gift a nation can give itself.

If education is the most important element for the economic and political development of a country, then teachers are the most critical component in a nation’s educational system. Teachers can make or break it.

One of the best ways of appreciating teachers is to raise the standards and quality of a nation’s educational system. This will make teachers much prouder of their profession and motivate them to perform even better.

Here are some of the ways this can be done, especially in the Armenia context:

  • Promote the critical role that teachers play in nation building
  • Create the conditions necessary to attract and retain the most talented people to the teaching profession
  • Give teachers ownership of their work. Encourage them to innovate, create and take initiative.
  • Create an atmosphere of ongoing education and development for teachers
  • Establish effective mechanisms of evaluating and enhancing teacher performance
  • Encourage and motivate parents to partner with teachers in the education of their children

Our children deserve the best education life can offer.

Our nation deserves a future led by well educated leaders.

Let us enhance our educational system, making it the best. This will make our teachers feel most appreciated.

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