Windsor

Windsor educator aims to train one million teachers in Africa

Hakeem Subair, the CEO of 1 Million Teachers, is on a mission to train thousands of teachers in Africa to develop their skills, instill motivation and encourage more people to enter the profession, which in turn reduces the continent's shortage of teachers.

4,000 teachers have been trained so far through the 1 Million Teachers program

Hakeem Subair (centre) launched 1 Million Teachers in 2017. (1 Million Teachers/Facebook)

Hakeem Subair, the CEO of 1 Million Teachers, is on a mission to train thousands of teachers in Africa to develop their skills, instill motivation and encourage more people to enter the profession.

The goal is to reduce the continent's shortage of teachers. 

The program follows a "karate system," according to Subair, in which teachers gradually move up to a "black belt" level where he hopes they've grasped the concept of lifelong learning.

The program's first cohort of high-potential black belt teachers graduated earlier this month. (1 Million Teachers/Facebook)

After moving to Windsor from Nigeria, Subair said he could not stop thinking about the challenges the country faced in terms of its education system.

"In most cases, teachers don't want to be teachers," said Subair, adding "they're not very well paid."    

Financial incentives

1 Million Teachers offers training online where teachers can access it through mobile phones, tablets and their desktop.

The program also offers financial incentives, providing stipends for completing the program.

"The idea is to start with a group of dedicated people, get them through this very rigorous program where they become resource persons themselves," said Subair. 

The program offers financial incentives for teachers. (1 Million Teachers/Facebook)

Interestingly, after achieving the third black belt level, teachers move back down to white belt again, signifying the idea that "the more you know, the more you find out that you don't know," according to Subair.

He says teachers have a great impact on society, adding that the continent faces such issues including child soldiers, climate change and poverty, and by investing in education, they're investing in Africa's future.

Lifelong learning

The program's first cohort of high-potential black belt teachers graduated earlier this month, having enrolled in the program in 2017 when the program launched.

Subair will be returning to Windsor tomorrow from his month-long trip in Africa, where he visited Nigeria, Rwanda, Botswana and South Africa. 

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