GLOBAL TEACHER: Ilonggo named one of 10 best teachers in the world

Jesus Insilada

An Ilonggo educator made it to the list of the best teachers in world this 2018.

Dr. Jesus Insilada, who teaches English and creative writing at Caninguan National High School in Lambunao, Iloilo, has been named a top 10 finalist for the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2018.

The Global Teacher Prize was set up to recognize 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.

Now in its fourth year, the Global Teacher Prize will give the winner a whopping US$1 million award which is the largest prize of its kind.

Jesus Insilada’s approach to teaching is known as culture-based education (CBE), which he models in his school throughout the curriculum. A proud member of the Indigenous People’s Panay Bukidnon community, he hopes education throughout his country will become truly inclusive and culture-sensitive.

With this approach, students become engaged in their education, learning through traditional dances, songs, epics, local games and crafts that give context to their studies.

Culture based teaching by Jesus Insilada

From a poor farming background, he is the first in his family to achieve professional qualifications, and is now the leader of, and teacher in, a school in a community where over 90 percent of students belong to Indigenous Peoples groups.

Test scores show that at least 87 percent of his pupils achieve their age-expected grades through culture-based teaching. He has received many national and international awards for teaching, his writing and his promotion and support for indigenous culture.

In a special video message announcing the top ten finalists, philanthropist Bill Gates paid a powerful tribute to the work of teachers around the world. He said:

“When you think about what drives progress and improvement in the world, education is like a master switch—one that opens up all sorts of opportunities for individuals and societies.

“And research has shown that having a great teacher can be the most important factor that determines whether students get a great education.”

Jesus Insilada and the other finalists have been selected from over 30,000 nominations and applications from 173 countries around the world.

The top ten have been narrowed down from a top 50 shortlist that was announced in December 2017. By highlighting their stories the Varkey Foundation hopes that the public will be able to join in passionate debates about the importance of teachers.

The awarding ceremony will be at the Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai on Sunday, March 18, 2018, where the winner will be announced live on stage in a red carpet gala event which is beamed around the world.

Sunny Varkey, founder of the Varkey Foundation and the Global Teacher Prize, said:

“I want to congratulate Jesus Insilada for being selected as a top ten finalist from such a huge number of talented and dedicated teachers. I hope his story will inspire those looking to enter the teaching profession and also shine a powerful spotlight on the incredible work teachers do all over the Philippines and throughout the world every day.”

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