Dubai: The ten finalists for the $1-million Global Teacher Prize were revealed on Wednesday, with the winner to be awarded on March 19 in Dubai.
Established by the Varkey Foundation, the prize is awarded under the patronage of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
The finalists are listed on www.globalteacherprize.org. In a video message, Prince Harry of Wales paid tribute to the work of teachers around the world on the occasion of the announcement of the finalists.
Last year, Palestinian teacher Hanan Al Hroub won the prize for her adaptation of using playtime in the classroom as a way of reaching out and educating children in strife-torn communities.
This year, two UAE-based teachers were included in the top 50 shortlisted candidates. However, there are no UAE-based teachers among the ten finalists. The prize committee will look for evidence that applicants meet certain criteria, such as achieving student learning outcomes in the classroom and achievements in the wider community that provide models of excellence for the teaching profession, among others.
Now in its third year, the award is the largest prize of its kind.
In his video message, Prince Harry said: “In addition to reading, writing and arithmetic, the very best teachers go beyond the pages of textbooks to teach young people about determination, aspiration, resilience and compassion. We will all face setbacks and challenges in our lives and our teachers play a vital role in preparing us for these ups and downs.”
The top ten have been narrowed down from 20,000 nominations and applications from 179 countries. The winner will be announced at the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai on March 19.
Sunny Varkey, founder of the Varkey Foundation, said: “I want to congratulate all of the top ten finalists from such a huge number of talented and dedicated teachers. I hope their stories will inspire those looking to enter the teaching profession and also shine a powerful spotlight on the incredible work teachers do all over the world every day.”
The winner will be paid the prize money in equal instalments over ten years. A condition of winning the prize is that the winner remains as a classroom teacher for at least five years.
The 10 finalists for Global Teacher Prize 2017
Salima Begum, head teacher at Elementary College for Women, Gilgit, Pakistan.
David Calle, from Madrid, Spain, the founder and creator of the Unicoos educational website.
Wemerson da Silva Nogueira, a science teacher at the Escola Antônio dos Santos Neves in Boa Esperança, Brazil.
Marie-Christine Ghanbari Jahromi, a physical education, maths and German teacher at Gesamtschule Gescher school, Gescher, Germany.
Tracy-Ann Hall, an automotive technology teacher at Jonathan Grant High School in Spanish Town, Jamaica.
Maggie MacDonnell, a teacher at Ikusik School, Kativik School Board, Canadian Arctic.
Ken Silburn, a science teacher at Casula High School, south-west Sydney, Australia.
Yang Boya, a psychology teacher at The Affiliated Middle School of Kunming Teachers College, Yunnan province, China.
Michael Wamaya, a dance teacher from Mathare, Nairobi, Kenya.
Raymond Chambers, a computer science teacher from Brooke Weston Academy in Corby, Northamptonshire, United Kingdom.