Eric Asomani Asante, an ICT teacher at Naylor SDA Basic School, in Tema, Ghana, has been included in the top 50 shortlist for the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2023 organised in collaboration with UNESCO and in strategic partnership with Dubai Cares, a UAE-based global philanthropic organisation.
Eric Asomani Asante, shortlisted for the Global Teacher Prize 2023, was selected from over 7,000 nominations and applications from 130 countries around the world.
Now in its eighth year, the USD 1 million Global Teacher Prize is the largest prize of its kind.
It was set up to recognise one exceptional teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession as well as to shine a spotlight on the important role teachers play in society. By unearthing thousands of stories of heroes that have transformed young people’s lives, the prize hopes to bring to life the exceptional work of millions of teachers all over the world.
As a hardworking young man with a great passion for imparting knowledge to others, Eric Asomani Asante decided to become an ICT teacher. As part of his teaching work, he has faced a number of challenges – including a lack of adequate computers to facilitate practical lessons, and a lack of Internet connectivity.
To tackle these problems, Eric has innovated by connecting one computer system to thirty pupils’ monitors, and by developing an offline website that enables him to teach Internet topics in the absence of internet connectivity. He has subsequently shared this solution with thousands of other ICT teachers.
In 2020, Eric was named Ghana’s Most Outstanding Teacher in the National Teaching Council’s “Ghana Teacher Prize”, and in 2022, he became the winner of the National Best STEM Teacher award.
His Excellency, Dr. Tariq Al Gurg, Chief Executive Officer and Vice-Chairman of Dubai Cares, said:
“Congratulations to the teachers who have secured a place in the Top 50 list of the prestigious Global Teacher Prize. Teachers are the driving force behind progress, inspiring and shaping the leaders and innovators of tomorrow. In addition to imparting knowledge, the role of teachers needs to be redefined as coaches, mentors, and facilitators who can empower their students to achieve their full potential by instilling in their students the values, skills, knowledge, and experiences they need to contribute solutions to the global challenges facing humanity and thrive in our ever-changing world. We value our long-standing partnership with the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize, which celebrates the tireless efforts and incredible accomplishments of teachers around the world and their role in driving human development.”
Dubai Cares’ long-standing support for the Global Teacher Prize stems from its belief that an investment in teachers is an investment in human development. Through its Framework for Global Education Transformation, Dubai Cares is committed to elevating the role of educators as coaches, mentors and facilitators as well as positioning them as “Human Experience Teachers” who can nurture students and empower them with the values, skills, knowledge and experiences they need to face the complexities and challenges of the future.
Stefania Giannini, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education, said:
“I would like to extend my warmest congratulations to Eric Asomani Asante. UNESCO is a proud partner of the Global Teacher Prize, because teachers deserve our great recognition. They inspire and prepare children and youth to navigate a rapidly evolving world. Their efforts play a leading role in transforming education for the future.”
Applications and nominations for this year’s Global Teacher Prize opened on 6 May 2023 and closed on 25 June 2023.
Sunny Varkey, founder of the Varkey Foundation, said:
“Congratulations to Eric Asomani Asante. The Global Teacher Prize was launched to highlight the importance of education in tackling the great challenges ahead – from climate change to growing inequality to sweeping changes in technology.”
The prize is open to working teachers who teach children that are in compulsory schooling or are between the ages of five and eighteen. Teachers who teach children age 4+ in an Early Years government-recognised curriculum are also eligible, as are teachers who teach on a part-time basis, and teachers of online courses. Teachers must spend at least 10 hours per week teaching and plan to remain in the profession for the next 5 years. It is open to teachers in every kind of school and, subject to local laws, in every country in the world.
Teachers applying for the Global Teacher Prize are assessed on teaching practices, how they innovate to address local challenges, achieve demonstrable learning outcomes, impact the community beyond the classroom, help children become global citizens, improve the teaching profession and gain recognition from external bodies.
Interested teachers were able to apply for the Global Teacher Prize at www.globalteacherprize.org before the closing date for applications of 25 June 2023.
The prize will now be narrowed down to top 10 finalists, to be announced later in the year, helping to raise the bar of respect for the teaching profession. The winner will be chosen from the top 10 finalists by the Global Teacher Prize Academy made up of prominent individuals, and will be announced later this year.
When teachers are nominated, the person nominating them writes a brief description online explaining why. The teacher being nominated is then sent an email letting them know they have been nominated and inviting them to apply for the prize.