Q Who was awarded the annual Global Teacher Prize, one of the most coveted and high-profile awards for teaching excellence for 2017?
A. Salima Begum
B. Tracy-Ann Hall
C. Maggie MacDonnell
D. Ken Silburn
Maggie MacDonnell was awarded the annual Global Teacher Prize, one of the most coveted and high-profile awards for teaching excellence for 2017.
About Maggie MacDonnell
Maggie MacDonnell is a teacher in a fly-in Inuit village called Salluit, nestled in the Canadian Arctic. This is home to the second northernmost Inuit community in Quebec with a population of just over 1,300. Here in the winter, temperatures can reach to minus 25 degree Celsius and is accessible only by air. These are areas of high deprivation, isolation and limited resources with tremendous gender issues.
Due to the harsh conditions, there are very high rates of teacher turnover which is a significant barrier to education in the Arctic. Many teachers leave their post midway through the year, and many apply for stress leave. Her current school has no Principal as he left after six weeks on stress leave.
Students too often turn to drinking and smoking, even drugs and self-harm or turn to suicides.
In these difficult environments, Maggie’s approach of engaging students in the community through turning students from “problems” to “solutions” is remarkable.
She started “Life Skills” program for motivating young people to return to school, by engaging them in projects that interest them – from cookery to mechanics. She has created a life skills program specifically for girls that were formerly dominated by boys. She has established a fitness center which has become a hub for youth and adults in the local community who are embracing a healthier lifestyle.
She has made an outstanding contribution to the lives of her students and everyone in Salluit.
About the award
The $1 million Global Teacher Prize is awarded by the Varkey Foundation under the patronage of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister, and Emir of Dubai.