Closing the Teacher Gap

Researching the Challenges and Opportunities for International Teacher Recruitment and Retention

image of Closing the Teacher Gap

With a shortfall of 18 million teachers in the numbers required to meet the education Millennium Development Goals, research on the global teaching force becomes critical in informing planning and preparation for future learners.  Yet data about teachers across all regions of the Commonwealth is not yet reliable enough or adequate for truly effective planning and policy-making. Since 2006, the Commonwealth Secretariat has held a series of research symposia to explore aspects of this data gap in an attempt to help address the problem. This publication reports on the proceedings of the fourth symposium, held in conjunction with the US National Education Association, which looked particularly at international teacher mobility, recruitment and retention, and the significance of this research for the future of education, globally.



Executive Summary

The Fourth Commonwealth Teachers’ Research Symposium is the most recent in a series of research events conducted by the Commonwealth Secretariat since 2006 in direct response to the request of Commonwealth Ministers of Education to undertake research to monitor the status, mobility and recruitment of teachers as presented in the future actions of the Commonwealth Teacher Recruitment Protocol (Stoke Rochford, 2004). Studies undertaken in 2006 revealed the unreliability and inadequacy of data and research about teachers across all regions of the Commonwealth and called on member countries to do more to capture teacher data for planning and policy-making. Symposium 2009, hosted by the National Education Association (NEA), the largest union and organisation of teachers in the USA, is the first time that one of these research symposia was held in a non-Commonwealth country.


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