31 October 2014

National Catholic Education Commission executive director Ross Fox says Australia’s celebration of World Teachers’ Day* is a great opportunity to thank educators for their generous work in the service of children’s learning.

“We all have memories of great teachers who shaped our lives,” Mr Fox said.

Countless more memories of great teachers are being created in schools across Australia every day.

“Tens of thousands of teachers in Catholic schools nationwide – along with those teaching in other settings – are changing the lives of the students in their classrooms,” Mr Fox said.

“As Pope Francis has said, ‘Educating is an important mission, which draws young people to what is good, beautiful and true’.”

Mr Fox said while the size of the challenge facing teachers can differ, the challenge itself always remains the same.

“That challenge is how to create the best possible educational experience for every child – how to draw young people to what is ‘good, beautiful and true’,” he said.

“Children come to school with a diverse range of abilities, as well as a diverse range of experiences and advantages.”

In recent years, Catholic schools have – as part of their commitment to serving those in particular need – significantly increased the proportion of students with disability they enrol. Teachers have embraced the challenge of creating a learning environment that supports the learning of these students.

“They, like so many teachers, are an inspiration,” Mr Fox said.

“Surveys regularly find that quality of teaching is rated highly when parents and carers choose a school for their children.”

Mr Fox said excellence in teaching can and should serve as a model for other schools and teachers.

“By sharing passion and wisdom, teachers can strengthen the overall quality of teaching and learning in Australian schools.”

Mr Fox encouraged everyone to take the opportunity on World Teachers’ Day to thank a teacher who has contributed to their learning and development.

* World Teachers’ Day is celebrated internationally on October 5, but on the last Friday in October in Australia.