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Peter Tabichi is ‘Champion For Children In Conflicts And Crisis’ | Coastweek

In March, Peter Tabichi, a Maths and Physics teacher at Keriko Secondary School, Pwani Village, Nakuru, Kenya, was named as the winner of the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2019, awarded under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai. At a glittering award ceremony at Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai, his triumph announced by actor, singer, and producer Hugh Jackman. PHOTO - VARKEY FOUNDATION
 

Global Teacher award winner Peter Tabichi becomes
first ‘Champion For Children In Conflicts And Crisis’

Varkey Foundation warmly welcomes appointment by Education Cannot Wait, the global fund for education in crisis

Peter Tabichi, the Kenyan science teacher who won the US$1 million Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2019 has been appointed as the first "Champion for Children in Conflicts and Crisis" for Education Cannot Wait, the global fund for education in crisis, in a move welcomed by the Varkey Foundation.

Peter Tabichi will champion the cause of the 75 million children whose education is disrupted by conflicts and natural disasters.

Travelling to the world’s most crisis-affected children and with planned engagements at the 2019 United Nations General Assembly and other high-level events, it is hoped his inspiring story and powerful voice will help raise the urgency on the world stage to invest in the future of children in crisis.

He will join actors Will Smith and Rachel Brosnahan who are advocates for Education Cannot Wait’s cause.

Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, the UN Special Envoy for Global Education and Chair of Education Cannot Wait’s High-Level Steering Group, has described Peter Tabichi as an inspiration to all involved in teaching and learning, and said he is looking forward to working with him.

Vikas Pota, Chairman of the Varkey Foundation said:

"Every day a child is out of education is not just a tragedy for the child, it is a tragedy for the world they will inherit.

"To tackle the education crisis, most severe in those places plagued by conflict and natural disaster, it is vital that we learn from teachers like Peter Tabichi, who are working on the front line to give young people born into the most challenging circumstances the skills they need to face the future with confidence."

Peter Tabichi said:

"The students I teach see true hardships every day, from poverty to drought and hunger.

"But I also see in them raw talent and great creativity, hard work, a determination to defy the odds, and be the best they can be.

"Every child, everywhere in the world deserves the chance to fulfil their full potential.

It is heart-breaking to know that 75 million children around the world see their educational chances disrupted by conflict and natural disasters.

"Education Cannot Wait is doing vital work to make sure these children are not left behind.

"It will be my great honour to help them ensure children whose lives have been blighted by war and catastrophe are given their birth right; a decent education."

Peter Tabichi is a science teacher who gives away 80 per cent of his monthly income to help the poor.

His dedication, hard work and passionate belief in his students’ talent has led his poorly-resourced school in remote rural Kenya to emerge victorious after taking on the country’s best schools in national science competitions."

In March, Peter Tabichi, a Maths and Physics teacher at Keriko Secondary School, Pwani Village, Nakuru, Kenya, was named as the winner of the Varkey Foundation Global Teacher Prize 2019, awarded under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai. At a glittering award ceremony at Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai, his triumph announced by actor, singer, and producer Hugh Jackman.

Peter, 36, teaches at Keriko Mixed Day Secondary School in Pwani Village, situated in a remote, semi-arid part of Kenya’s Rift Valley.

Here, students from a host of diverse cultures and religions learn in poorly equipped classrooms.

Their lives can be tough in a region where drought and famine are frequent.

Ninety-five percent of pupils hail from poor families, almost a third are orphans or have only one parent, and many go without food at home.

Drug abuse, teenage pregnancies, dropping out early from school, young marriages and suicide are common.

Turning lives around in a school with only one computer, poor internet, and a student-teacher ratio of 58:1, is no easy task, not least when to reach the school, students must walk 7km along roads that become impassable in the rainy season.

Undeterred, Peter started a talent nurturing club and expanded the school’s Science Club, helping pupils design research projects of such quality that 60 per cent now qualify for national competitions.

Peter mentored his pupils through the Kenya Science and Engineering Fair 2018 – where students showcased a device they had invented to allow blind and deaf people to measure objects.

Peter saw his village school come first nationally in the public schools category. The Mathematical Science team also qualified to participate at the INTEL International Science and Engineering Fair 2019 in Arizona, USA, for which they’re currently preparing.

His students have also won an award from The Royal Society of Chemistry after harnessing local plant life to generate electricity.

Peter and four colleagues also give low-achieving pupils one-to-one tuition in Maths and Science outside class and on the weekends, where Peter visits students’ homes and meets their families to identify the challenges they face.

Despite teaching in a school with only one desktop computer with an intermittent connection, Peter uses ICT in 80 per cent of his lessons to engage students, visiting internet cafes and caching online content to be used offline in class.

Through making his students believe in themselves, Peter has dramatically improved his pupils’ achievement and self-esteem.

Enrolment has doubled to 400 over three years, and cases of indiscipline have fallen from 30 per week to just three. In 2017, only 16 out of 59 students went on to college, while in 2018, 26 students went to university and college.

Girls’ achievement in particular has been boosted, with girls now leading boys in all four tests set in the last year.

All of this is made possible in a severely resource constrained school by an exceptional teacher.

The Global Teacher Prize is a US $1million dollar award, presented annually to an exceptional teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to the profession.

Peter Tabichi, winner of the Global Teacher Prize 2019 was chosen from our top 10 finalists who come from all corners of the globe.

From teaching in remote towns and villages to inner-city schools, they advocate for inclusivity and for child rights, integrate migrants into the classrooms, and nurture their students’ abilities and confidence using music, technology, robotics and science.

Peter has dedicated his life to helping others.

He gives 80 per cent of his teaching salary to local community projects, including education, sustainable agriculture and peace-building.

He’s changed the lives of his students in many ways, including the introduction of science clubs and the promotion of peace between different ethnic groups and religions.

He has also helped to address food insecurity among the wider community in the famine-prone Rift Valley.

 

             

 

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