Malawian teacher Andrew Nchessie of Kasungu Demonstration School and Kasungu Teachers Training College has been included in the first ever GEMS Foundation Global Teacher Prize which could see him walk away with $1 million if he come out on top.
The other 49 nominees are dotted around 25 countries, with 16 of them coming from the USA.
Nchessie said he started his teaching career in a primary school in 1994 and since then he has made a significant contribution to curriculum development in Malawi, along with training the nation’s primary school teachers on using new curricula.
Among others, he has also contributed material to 150 science educational television programmes that have been broadcast to over 10 million viewers.
A panel of judges whittles the 50 nominees down to 10, and the winner of the Global Teacher Prize will be announced at the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai on March 16, 2015, according to globalteacherprize.org.
Sponsored by the Varkley GEMS Foundation, the “reward of a lifetime” is given to “one innovative and caring teacher who has made an inspirational impact on their students and their community. Teachers currently teaching children in a compulsory setting or between the ages 5-18 are eligible.”
Special commendations to outstanding teachers around the world will also be awarded.
Nchessie said the nomination is the recognition of the hard work among the teachers in the country.
Former US president Bill Clinton, who chairs the foundation, said improving standards in school depended on “attracting the best people to teaching, developing and supporting their skills, and holding our teachers in high regard”.